Acting deputy Homeland Security secretary Ken Cuccinelli on Tuesday accused Oregon officials of “smearing federal officers” instead of “restoring peace” as Portland was blighted by riots and a record number of murders.
“Even while this tragedy was unfolding, state and local officials seemed to be more concerned about scoring cheap political points, smearing federal officers, and impeding the @DHSgov mission than in restoring peace to Portland,” he wrote.
Local and state officials have accused federal officers of inciting violence during the nightly protests in Portland.
More than 100 officers were deployed to the city to quell the demonstrations sparked by the May 25 police-involved death of George Floyd.
Cuccinelli also posted a press release from the Oregon US Attorney’s Office announcing the arrest of a protester for allegedly assaulting a US Marshal deputy “with an explosive device” at the federal courthouse.
“This is just one of too many examples federal officers faced night after night in Portland while state and local officials played politics with public safety for 2 months,” he said. “At least they’re finally doing the right thing now, but this never should have happened.”
Last week, Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf said 240 DHS agents were injured during the riots.
Protests in the city have died down after the feds and Oregon officials reached a deal that the agents would begin withdrawing as long as local and state police stepped up.
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