Federal law enforcement officers' actions at protests in Oregon's largest city, conducted without local authorities' consent, are raising the prospect of a constitutional crisis - one that could escalate as weeks of demonstrations find renewed focus amid clashes with camouflaged, unidentified agents outside Portland's USA courthouse.
Federal law enforcement agents and protesters have continued to clash nightly in Portland.
Durkan-along with the mayors of Atlanta, Chicago, Kansas City, Portland, and Washington, DC- requested Trump "immediately halt plans to send federal forces from major American cities and withdraw any forces now in cities".
The decision to dispatch agents to American cities is playing out at a hyper-politicized moment when Trump is trying to show he is a "law-and-order" president and painting Democratic-led cities as out of control.
A flurry of legal action is aimed at curtailing or stopping the use of federal forces to enforce the law in Portland and other cities. With less than four months to go before Election Day, Trump has been serving up dire warnings that the violence would worsen if his Democratic rival Joe Biden is elected in November, as he tries to win over voters who could be swayed by that message.
But some agents have been reportedly driving in unmarked vans and taking protesters off streets not near federal buildings and without identifying themselves.
"This president blusters and bluffs and says he's going to do things and they never materialize on a regular basis, so we should not overrate his statements, they are so often not true".
Rather, there are simply "some people who have strong feelings", Rep. Earl Blumenauer said Tuesday during a floor speech in Washington, D.C.
According to The Chicago Tribune, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security will station 150 federal agents in Chicago by the end of the week.
Speaking from the White House, Mr Trump said he had "no choice" but to deploy hundreds of federal agents to Chicago.
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Cuccinelli said the Trump administration became aware of "intelligence about planned attacks on federal facilities" in and around Portland after observing weeks of demonstrations in the city. Protesters repeatedly tried to break into the courthouse and set fires around it, and the federal agents drove them back with tear gas and stun grenades, the police said in a news release.
Earlier in the week, the president said officers in the city had done a "great job".
The letter, addressed to U.S. Attorney General William Barr and Department of Homeland Security Acting Secretary Chad Wolf, said the deployment was "unprecedented and violates fundamental constitutional protections and tenets of federalism".
"We are just amplifying (Don't Shoot Portland)'s message", Rebecca, another mom who joined Barnum, told CNN.
As our colleagues have seen in Portland, Trump's secret forces will terrorize communities and create chaos.
"The president is not the king", said Kent Greenfield, a Boston College law professor specializing in constitutional law.
Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum sued the Department of Homeland Security last week and asked a federal judge to grant a temporary order blocking its officers from what she called unlawful detentions that lacked probable cause.
"We are not patrolling the streets of Portland, as has been falsely reported", Morgan claimed, despite federal officers assisting the Portland police in clearing city streets on multiple nights. He said he saw potential crimes by agents in video footage from Portland.
Instead, Lightfoot ticked off more than three pages of help from the federal government she said she would welcome, including "common-sense gun reform", and more federal grants for anti-violence outreach programs as well as investments in Chicago's South and West side neighborhoods.