Police arrested more than 60 people in Washington on Wednesday for shutting down the heart of the US corporate lobbying industry as part of a week-long union-backed campaign.
Over 1,000 protesters, including hundreds of trade unionists, unemployed people and clergy, staged the sit-in on rain-sodden K Street at midday to highlight the corrupting influence of big capital on the political process.
They chanted: "We Are The 99 per cent" and waved union banners and placards reading: "Democracy is not for sale."
Members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which represents health and public-sector workers, are playing a leading role in the Take Back the Capitol campaign, which aims to remind members of Congress that they are meant to represent ordinary US citizens, not huge corporations.
"No amount of rain can faze those battered by the storm of economic injustice and corporate greed," the SEIU declared as protesters shut down K Street.
Police threatened to arrest the protesters for obstruction. They moved in when hundreds stayed put and officers hauled 62 into waiting police vans.
SEIU member Michelle Boyle, a nurse from Pittsburgh, said she came with two busloads of demonstrators.
Ms Boyle said her mother-in-law had lost her small-business job and her health insurance, and that she died soon after.
She said it was unfair that executives at companies that have laid off workers have received huge tax breaks and bonuses.
"My husband was raised by his mother, I was raised by my parents, to believe in a can-do America," she said.
"I have a lot of hope in America and I have a lot of hope and faith - I have to - for my daughters and their future."
Earlier, 11 protesters affiliated with the pro-working class American Dream Movement were arrested and charged with obstructing a public highway.
Later in the day about a dozen more were arrested at the Supreme Court.
In San Francisco 70 people were arrested early on Wednesday morning when police cleared the city's Occupy Wall Street offshoot, after giving its occupants five minutes' notice to clear out.
Some protesters were injured in the sweep.
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