US, state to assist Portland police during expected protest
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon’s U.S. prosecutor is convening meetings with federal, state and local law enforcement to help Portland police prepare for a right-wing rally and counter-protests that could become violent, a newspaper reported.
So far, no one has applied for any city permits to use Tom McCall Waterfront Park, one of the sites advertised as the gathering place for a so-called right-wing “End Domestic Terrorism” rally on Aug. 17, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported on Friday.
Oregon U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams told the newspaper that other law enforcement agencies need to step up to help Portland police get ahead of “political violence” like the kind that unfolded during a right-wing rally in June.
Similar clashes between right-wing demonstrators, many from out of state, and self-described anti-fascists who turn out to oppose them have captured national attention several times in the past two years.
On June 29, clashes between the opposing groups of protesters turned violent.
An attack on conservative blogger Andy Ngo was captured on video and went viral, prompting U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana to issue a Senate resolution singling out the Portland violence and calling for anti-fascists to be labeled “domestic terrorists.” President Trump expressed his support for that idea in a tweet last week.
The upcoming rally is expected to attract far-right groups such as the Proud Boys, Oathkeepers and Three Percenters to Portland.
Rose City Antifa has issued a statement asking counter-protesters to defend Portland.
“Our efforts are centered around marshaling resources to help out the Portland Police Bureau,” Williams told The Oregonian/OregonLive.