- Democrats raged at Trump over the weekend after federal agents arrested rowdy protestors in Portland.
- They say the federal police presence in Oregon is more like an authoritarian “banana republic” than a democracy. They’ve accused Trump of violating the First Amendment.
- The First Amendment guarantees the right to protest only so long as its peaceful. Using unmarked police vehicles is a standard practice in the U.S.
On Sunday, Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler called recent federal policing actions in the city “unconstitutional.”. Wheeler accused the Trump Administration of using “abhorrent” tactics and demanded that Trump remove federal agents from Portland.
On CNN’s “State of The Union,” Wheeler told Jake Tapper:
People are being literally scooped off the street into unmarked vans, rental cars, apparently. They are being denied probable cause. And they are denied due process. They don’t even know who’s pulling them into the vans. The people aren’t identifying themselves. And, as far as I can see, this is completely unconstitutional.
He also said the federal police’s presence there is escalating the violence in his embattled city. Violent protests, rioting, and looting in Portland have raged for 52 days now. Mayor Wheeler, Oregon Governor Kate Brown, and local police have struggled to maintain order.
Democrats Lash Out At Trump for “Authoritarian” Policing in Portland
Mayor Wheeler wasn’t the only Democratic politician to call out the Trump Administration. Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) accused Trump of using the tactics of “authoritarian governments” in Portland.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, meanwhile, said federal police officers in Portland are more like a “banana republic” than a democracy. She also labeled the federal agents “stormtroopers,” a reference to the villains in Star Wars, or perhaps the Nazis. A resounding issue for the Trump critics…