Last night National Guard troops joined local law enforcement to put down a riot in downtown Portland, after governor Kate Brown used the pretext of right wing violence to quietly activate them the day before the election under a “unified command” with Portland police and others:
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown on Monday put the National Guard on standby for a 48-hour period around Election Day and used her executive authority to activate a unified command of state troopers, sheriff’s deputies and Portland police to handle any protests…
“We’ve seen firsthand what happens when free expression is fueled by hate,” the Democratic governor said. “We know that there are some people who might want to use peaceful election night protests to promote violence and property destruction,”
“I want to be very, very clear that voter intimidation and political violence will not be tolerated. Not from the left, not from the right and not from the center. Not this week, not any week in Oregon,” Brown said.
The unified command will begin at 5 p.m. Monday and end at 5 p.m. Wednesday. It can be extended if necessary, Brown said. State police and the Multnomah County sheriff’s office will oversee the unified force. That allows its members to use tear gas if needed. Portland police are prohibited from using tear gas after an order by Mayor Ted Wheeler, who is also police commissioner.
Ted Wheeler has since won reelection and antifa councilmember Chloe Eudaly lost, stranding councilmember Jo Ann Hardesty in her quest to dismantle the police for the time being. The local insurrection can be expected to continue, outraged by these results.
A large protest at the riverfront spawned a group of 100 to 200 black bloc that advanced on downtown, as they typically do. A riot was declared on Harvey Milk Street very early–someone told me around 7:30 the police LRAD sound truck was making the announcement. Dedicated black bloc in full gear straggled in here and there at the same time, converging on the Justice Center and federal courthouse. Where one might have expected to find a celebratory mood it was very dark. After I took this video I was briefly tailed by two guys in a white van I took to be antifa; the passenger, sporting what I think was an ironic moustache, peered, bemused, at my half-ass dash camera setup (a notched piece of Styrofoam holding my phone):