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Occupy protesters start march from NYC to D.C.

NEW YORK — Flanked by police scooters, about two dozen Occupy Wall Street protesters started a two-week walk from New York to Washington on Wednesday.

Demonstrators affiliated with the Occupy Wall Street protests walk through Times Square during an 11-mile march from uptown Manhattan to Zuccotti Park, Monday, Nov. 7, 2011, in New York.

The activists left Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park, marched past the World Trade Center site and boarded a ferry to New Jersey. They plan to walk through Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland and arrive in Washington by Nov. 23 — the deadline for a congressional committee to decide whether to keep President Barack Obama’s extension of Bush-era tax cuts. Protesters say the cuts benefit only rich Americans.

Michael Glazer, 26, an actor from Chicago, smiled as he boarded the ferry across the Hudson River, cheered by supporters shouting, “Thank you!” Walking in well-worn boots, he said: “I’ve had these for years and years, and they’ve served me well for many miles of marches.”

They hope to pick up other participants along their 240-mile march and have likened the effort to long-distance walks during the civil rights era. They say they’ll overnight by camping or at volunteered accommodations.

Among those seeing off the Occupy marchers was Rabbi Chaim Gruber, 42, the self-appointed “resident rabbi” of the New York protest.

“Anyone need a sleeping bag?” he asked the group, handing over two — along with a bag containing shampoo and extra socks.

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