Portland, Oregon, Mayor Ted Wheeler said Monday that city officials would do “everything we can” to hold accountable perpetrators who engaged in violence at Saturday’s protest, insisting that the city opposed such behavior “regardless of someone’s political leanings.”
“We will do everything we can to make sure that those who have committed violence are held accountable,” the mayor tweeted in his first public comment since the melee.
Mr. Wheeler, who has been criticized for failing to rein in the political clashes that have rocked Portland, came under renewed fire after black-clad antifa activists mobbed and pummeled right-leaning journalist Andy Ngo, sending him to the hospital.
“Over the weekend some chose to engage in violence in Portland, which is unacceptable and will not be tolerated,” Mr. Wheeler said in a thread. “We stand against all forms of violence — regardless of someone’s political leanings.”
The attack on Mr. Ngo, shown in video by the Oregonian and others, was denounced by some political and media figures, while others have accused the Quillette editor of provoking the attack by filming the protest.
Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, called Sunday for federal law enforcement to investigate and “bring legal action” against Mr. Wheeler, accusing him of ordering police to stand by and allow citizens to be attacked by “domestic terrorists” for “political reasons.”
The Oregon Republican Party tweeted, “When will @tedwheeler do his job and keep Oregonians in #pdx safe?” “PDX” is shorthand for Portland.
Portland police arrested three activists at the counter-protest, which the department said resulted in “multiple assaults,” but so far no arrests have been made in the attack on Mr. Ngo.
We stand against all forms of violence - regardless of someone’s political leanings.— Mayor Ted Wheeler (@tedwheeler) July 1, 2019
“While we continue to learn more about what transpired over the weekend, we will keep you informed,” Mr. Wheeler said.
He also said he was proud of Portland’s history as a “beacon of free speech,” but that in recent years some have abused that right to incite violence.
Additional video showed activists beating up another two Oregon men who had arrived for the Him Too rally, an event that spurred the counterprotest by Rose City Antifa and Portland Democratic Socialists of America.
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