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Governor Says Feds Are Withdrawing From Portland

Not so fast, says acting DHS secretary
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 29, 2020 12:43 PM CDT

(Newser) – Oregon Gov. Kate Brown says she has reached a deal with administration officials that will see the "occupying force" of federal agents removed from downtown Portland. Brown said Wednesday that agents from the US Marshals Service and US Customs and Border Protection will begin a phased withdrawal Thursday and Federal Protective Service officers at the city's federal courthouse will be bolstered by state troopers instead, the Oregonian reports. Brown said the agents "refused accountability and brought strife to our community" during nightly confrontations with protesters. Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler—who was tear-gassed by federal agents last week—hailed what he called the end of an "illegal occupation."

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf confirmed that an agreement had been made, although he described it in very different terms. "We are not removing any law enforcement while our facilities and law enforcement remain under attack," he tweeted Wednesday. But "the state of Oregon is finally agreeing to cooperate with our federal forces," he said in a second tweet, "exactly what we asked for since the nightly violence broke out two months ago." He added: "We're glad Oregon is now correcting their months long error." President Trump said Wednesday that agents would remain in Portland until local authorities "secured" the city, the AP reports. "Either they’re gonna clean up Portland soon, or the federal government is going up, and we’re gonna do it for them," he said. (Read more Portland, Oregon stories.)

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