The predominantly Muslim gathering, much smaller in size, but strongly coming out in support of the NYPD.
"We are not here to criticize the nypd, but rather to thank them for doing a lot of the work we as Muslims should be doing," said Zuhdi Jasser, Founding member of A.I.L.C.
Under a banner of support for the NYPD's counter terrorism effort, the American Islamic Leadership Coalition is the latest to step to the podium of what has become a controversial debate.
The NYPD's surveillance of Muslim groups, in Newark and other cities have drawn sharp criticism, but not from congressman Peter King.
"All police have the right to go from state to state, city to city, to carry out surveillance, to do investigations because terrorism does cross state and county lines," he said.
Seizing on that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie calls it bad law enforcement.
"If you come into New Jersey to do surveillance, make a phone call. I know Ray Kelly is a busy guy. He can make one phone call," Christie said on a radio show.
Kelly defended the surveillance Sunday, by referring to the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center after which few in law enforcement truly understood the threat.
"It was precisely our failure to understand the context in 1993 that left us vulnerable in 2001. We won't make that mistake again," he said.
Gary McCarthy, the former police director in Newark, now in Chicago, says even though he ok'd the NYPD operation he would not do the same in Chicago.
"We are focused on our mission of making Chicago the safest city for every resident. We must have a positive relationship with the wonderfully diverse communities that compromise Chicago."
U.S. Rep. Peter King, chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, also is speaking. King has been a steadfast supporter of the NYPD. The committee last summer held hearings examining the radical Islamic terror threat in the U.S. despite criticism.
"The threat right now is Islamist terrorism - and that's going to be coming from the Muslim community, it's just a fact," King said. "Just like the mafia came from the Italian community, and the Russian mob is coming from the Russian community."
(The Associated Press contributed to this report)
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