Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler gave a press conference on Sunday regarding the fatal shooting of a Trump supporter Saturday night. Wheeler bordered on insanity in his remarks, simultaneously blaming President Donald Trump for the violence and saying that not enough evidence existed to determine if the shooting was politically motivated. The chilling effect of his remarks was to imply, essentially, that Trump supporters had it coming.
In the ultimate expression of Trump Derangement Syndrome, Wheeler ignored the swarms of antifa rioters from out of state, warning out-of-state right-wing agitators not to come to Portland for “retribution.”
The shooting occurred as a pro-Trump rally was winding down, after a caravan of around 600 cars paraded from Clackamas, a suburb to the south of Portland, into downtown. In his press conference, Wheeler said his heart was with the family of the man killed, and then launched into a lengthy attack on President Trump, clearly intended to pin blame on him for the shooting.
“Yesterday’s events began with hundreds of cars filled with supporters of the president, rallying in Clackamas County and then driving through downtown Portland,” Wheeler said. “They were supported and energized by the president himself. President Trump, for four years, we have had to live with you and your racist attacks on black people. We learned early about your sexist attitudes towards women. We’ve had to endure clips of you mocking a disabled man. We’ve had to listen to your anti-democratic attacks on journalists. We’ve read your tweets slamming private citizens to the point of receiving death threats, and we’ve listened to your attacks on immigrants.”
The long laundry list of complaints kept going, ultimately leading to Wheeler’s accusation that the riots plaguing American cities were the fault of President Trump. “It’s you who have created the hate and the division,” he said. “It’s you who have not found the way to say the names of black people killed by police officers, even as people in law enforcement have.” Wheeler then repeated the debunked claim that President Trump had praised white supremacists.
Bizarrely, he then called on every other elected leader in Oregon to stop the violence, as if the riots in Portland have been the fault of anyone else besides the mayor of Portland. Perhaps that’s a veiled accusation against Gov. Kate Brown (D-Portland) for not deploying the National Guard, but it came off as yet more in Wheeler’s endless blame-shifting.
Portland Police Bureau Chief Chuck Lovell then spoke, repeatedly noting that there wasn’t much the police could do to stop the violence due to their limited resources.
Finally, Multnomah County District Attorney Mike Schmidt spoke, portraying this killing as a tragedy that undermines the protests for social justice reform. Schmidt gave a perfunctory statement of condolence for the victim and his family, then a diatribe about racial injustice. “We are stunned and saddened, angry and frustrated that this happened in our community. That the right or the duty to peacefully protest and speak out for an end to systemic racism that has plagued our country for generations could be undermined by this terrible act of violence.”
He actually said that.
Schmidt then went on to pin the hate, violence, and division on guns and out-of-state agitators.
It appears Oregon’s Democratic leaders have aligned their messaging to assert that President Trump is solely accountable for the violence in America’s streets.
Kate Brown released a statement that began:
For the last several years, and escalating in recent months, President Trump has encouraged division and stoked violence. It happened in Charlottesville. It happened in Kenosha. And now, unfortunately, it is happening in Portland, Oregon.
But despite the President’s jeers and tweets, this is a matter of life and death. Whether it’s his completely incompetent response to the pandemic, where nearly 200,000 have died, or his outright encouragement of violence in our streets: it should be clear to everyone by now that no one is truly safe with Donald Trump as President.
Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury also released a statement:
Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury released a statement Sunday morning, saying in part: “This tragedy will be used to justify escalating violence. It will be used to paint an entire movement with a broad and misleading brush. And sadly, it will be used by the occupant of the White House to deepen divisions and fear.”
Even Joe Biden weighed in:
Democratic presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden also released a statement Sunday denouncing the violence.
“The deadly violence we saw overnight in Portland is unacceptable. Shooting in the streets of a great American city is unacceptable. I condemn this violence unequivocally. I condemn violence of every kind by anyone … And I challenge Donald Trump to do the same,” he said.
You can watch the whole press conference here, if you can stomach it:
Jeff Reynolds is the author of the book, “Behind the Curtain: Inside the Network of Progressive Billionaires and Their Campaign to Undermine Democracy,” available at www.WhoOwnsTheDems.com. Jeff hosts a podcast at anchor.fm/BehindTheCurtain. You can follow him on Twitter @ChargerJeff, and on Parler at @RealJeffReynolds.
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