A "who’s who" of anti-vax activists head to D.C.

The rally has been largely organized on Facebook and some extremist internet forums, and organizers have raised at least $200,000 on a crowdfunding site. Some nearby hotels in Virginia are sold out ahead of the event, according to the event’s organizers, who are arranging last-minute travel plans for latecomers.

The “Defeat the Mandates DC” Facebook group, in which much of the organizing has taken place, now has more than 11,000 members, gaining almost 3,000 in just the last week. Organizers of the rally, Defeat The Mandates: An American Homecoming, say they are expecting tens of thousands of attendees who will begin their protest at the Washington Monument at 10:30 a.m. ET Sunday…

Among the scheduled speakers is Dr. Robert Malone, a virologist who has recently emerged as a new leader of the anti-vaccination movement after appearing on Joe Rogan’s podcast in December. Malone, who is president of the Pandemic Health Alliance, the organization soliciting donations for the rally, has pushed anti-Covid vaccine talking points, including tweeting a retracted study falsely claiming Covid vaccines caused a substantial number of deaths. He has instead repeatedly advocated for the use of ivermectin, an anti-parasitic drug that the Food and Drug Administration does not consider an effective treatment against Covid.