We the People Rising

One of the most active anti-immigrant groups in California, We the People Rising, holds protests targeting pro-immigrant elected officials, on an almost weekly basis. Its leaders are longtime anti-immigrant activists and have direct ties to far-right extremists. In 2014, We the People activists were part of the mob that prevented buses carrying women and children from entering an immigration processing center in the town of Murrieta, CA.

  • Founded in the mid 2000s as “We the People – California’s Crusader,” by longtime anti-immigrant activist Raymond Herrera, We the People Rising is based in Claremont, but its activists travel the length of the state for rallies and other events.
  • We the People specifically targets elected officials who have introduced pro-immigrant legislation, holding events outside of their offices or demanding to meet with the officials and their staff in person.
  • The face of the organization is Robin Hvidston, a former leader in the extremist Minuteman movement. Hvidston is routinely interviewed by California media and has a history of espousing anti-immigrant rhetoric.
  • We the People routinely holds demonstrations at the US/Mexico border and has supported anti-sanctuary efforts across Southern California since 2017. In 2014, during the height of fear mongering about a “border surge” in which thousands of predominantly women and children fleeing violence in Central America sought asylum in the United States, We the People organized protests in the town of Murrieta and were among the activists responsible for preventing buses carrying women and children from entering an immigration processing center in the town. A year later, Hvidston and We the People held a rally to mark the anniversary of the Murrieta protests and defend her group’s actions, stating, “We’re law abiding citizens. That was our message that day,” Hvidston said. “We respect our law officers and what the government was doing was extremely inappropriate.” The Murrieta mayor called the incident, “a black eye,” for the city. We the People is tied to the broader anti-immigrant movement outside of California, sending representatives to Washington, D.C. in the past for rallies and other events.
  • Hvidston also serves as the California director of the anti-immigrant group The Remembrance Project. Through her activism with The Remembrance Project, Hvidston was able to meet with Donald Trump a number of times while he was campaigning. Hvidston works directly with activist Arthur Schaper of the virulently anti-LGBT MassResistence, and in 2017, she was a featured speaker at a gathering of the right-wing American Freedom Alliance where she discussed targeting sanctuary cities.
  • In 2016, Hvidston traveled to San Francisco for a memorial for Kathryn Steinle. At the memorial, Hvidston was pictured with activist Rick Oltman. In the past, Oltman spoke at a number of gatherings of the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens, and also previously worked for FAIR.
  • In 2017, Hvidston attended and spoke at the annual Writers Workshop put on by the Social Contract Press, the publishing house founded by white nationalist John Tanton. The gathering brings together anti-immigrant activists, far-right figures, and elected officials to discuss the ills of immigration.
  • In an interview about why she became active with anti-immigrant groups, Hvidston stated, “When I go shopping and when I’m driving I’m usually a minority, but I have no minority rights as a person of Anglo descent. Even though I really know what it feels like to be a minority.”


  • In 2013, Hvidston travelled to Washington, D.C., to participate in the annual Hold Their Feet to the Fire event put on by the anti-immigrant Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), a group founded by white nationalist John Tanton.
  • From 2017 to the present, Hvidston and her organization have traveled throughout southern California attending city council meetings and encouraging council members to sign resolutions opposing California’s sanctuary state law.