GAINESVILLE, Fla. (NBC/AP) – Hundreds of people are protesting with signs and anti-Nazi chants outside a University of Florida auditorium where white nationalist Richard Spencer was preparing to speak.
Hundreds of police officers stood outside the UF Phillips Center for the Performing Arts to prevent violence.
Anti-Spencer protesters shouted, “Not in our town! Not in our state! We don’t want your Nazi hate!”
The school estimates it is spending $600,000 on security to ensure no repeat of violent clashes connected to a white nationalist gathering in Charlottesville, Virginia, that left one dead in August.
UF cited the Charlottesville violence in rejecting an initial request from Spencer to speak at the university, but later relented on free speech grounds.
Florida’s governor declared a state of emergency for the event.