A day after accusing the Portland police of collaborating “with federal occupiers,” Commissioner Chloe Eudaly wants to create a wall between the local police and the federal law enforcement recently deployed to the city.
Eudaly plans to introduce two-protest-related resolutions at Wednesday’s City Council meeting. The first would instruct the Portland Police Bureau to stop cooperating with all federal law enforcement. The second condemns the targeting of the press and legal observers by law enforcement.
“As Commissioner Eudaly stated yesterday, she is committed to doing everything in her power to oust the federal occupiers and hold the PPB accountable,” her office said in a statement. "These two resolutions are critical next steps in this effort.”
If passed as currently drafted, one resolution would bar all members of the Portland Police Bureau from providing, requesting or willingly receiving “operational support” from federal officers recently deployed to Portland. This includes embedding in a federal incident command center, sharing or receiving information with the federal officers or policing protests alongside them, according to the draft.
The rule says a police officer found to be in violation of the rule would “be subject to discipline.” It doesn’t define what form that discipline would take.
Eudaly's proposal also says that any request coming from the federal government for “operational cooperation” with the Portland bureau must be reported to the entire city council via email.
The other resolution "affirms" that local police can't arrest or use physical force on members of the press or legal observers who are obeying the law. A federal judge already placed these restrictions on Portland police earlier this month after a lawsuit filed by the ACLU on behalf of journalists and legal observers.
Eudaly is placing the item on the four-fifths agenda, meaning it will need to be approved by all four members of the city council, according to city code — including Mayor Ted Wheeler, who has day-to-day oversight of the bureau under Portland’s unique commission form of government. In a statement, Eudaly’s office said they have “a high degree of confidence” she has the support to get it passed.
If so, it would be the city's latest move to isolate itself from the federal officers residing in the city. Wheeler kicked officers from the Department of Homeland Security out of the city's incident command center this past Saturday.
City and state leaders have repeatedly said they believe the federal officers are escalating tensions and said they want them out of the city.
On Tuesday, the acting head of the Department of Homeland Security again refused that request.
Federal officers were deployed to Portland by President Trump to protect federal monuments and property, such as the downtown federal courthouse. Journalists have observed federal law enforcement using tear gas and batons without giving any warning or seemingly without provocation. Federal officers have shot at least two peaceful protesters in the head with impact munitions.