The news is out: [There’s a reason why Donald Trump chose Portland as his first major staging ground for this war on journalists and racial justice activists. In the weeks before Trump sent in Department of Homeland Security forces, the Portland police had been making regular use of violent tactics to subdue demonstrators. The Portland Police Bureau has already earned one temporary restraining order from a federal judge for its likely violation of protesters’ free speech rights and another for arresting journalists and legal observers for recording police activity at demonstrations. A few weeks ago, after state officials banned the use of tear gas by police except in the case of riots, the police simply began declaring the protests riots before tear-gassing crowds.
In the PPB, Trump has found a police force fully aligned with his contention that violent shows of force are necessary and warranted to disperse progressive demonstrators. And in Daryl Turner, the president of the Portland Police Association, the PPB’s union, Trump has found a ready ally. Turner has used the language of war to justify the presence of federal agents, saying the city is “under siege.” He’s also publicly denigrated the local elected officials who are calling for Trump to withdraw federal forces from the city: Turner said those leaders are “demonizing and vilifying the officers on the front lines” and “have placed their political agenda ahead of the safety and welfare of the community.”]
The Constitution is being trampled by Trump and there is no one in sight to defend it. If Trump is not re-elected, he will be facing a million lawsuits.