Tensions boiled over on Thursday as Republican Rep. Tom Reed made a campaign stop.
The congressman was hosting a "Stand up For Your Rights and Freedoms Rally" before protesters began clashing with supporters.
The congressman called on Mayor Svante Myrick to stand with him in unity against hate.
But his visit to the city wasn't a welcoming one.
While attempting to deliver an American flag to Myrick, Reed was not allowed inside City Hall.
Myrick claims he was in a meeting at the time, and said no visitors are allowed without an appointment.
"That is not how we're going to settle our disputes, and in the city of Ithaca in the home of a great institution that supports exchanging ideas," said Reed. "I will just tell you, very disappointing that the mayor chose to lock doors and not open doors and stand in unison."
It didn't take long for protesters to begin clashing with Reed and his supporters.
"We do not promote any hate in any way as far as bigotry, sexism and misogynist and other forms of hatred. We do not represent those people," Reed said.
One protester even burned an American flag feet from city hall.
Reed was disappointed with what he saw.
"I recognize they have the right to do that. That's one of the reasons we're standing here. But I also have the right to condemn the burning of our flag, to adamantly say that that's the most despicable thing that I can see and we will deliver and stand for this flag," said Reed.
Protesters held signs and chanted at Reed, saying he's not what Ithaca stands for.
"We're trying to build a better environment for generations to come. We want to influence a greater generation that there is a possibility that they will make it," one protester said.
Meanwhile, the mayor responded to Reed on his Facebook page earlier in the day, saying in part, "Thank you for the kind offer of the flag. We proudly fly the American Flag above City Hall, and every other city facility. I have one in my office that I cherish. So the city has little need for another."
He also suggested Reed should be more concerned with passing a COVID-19 relief package to help communities across his district.