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Trump ‘sought to frame and create a culture war’ by deploying DHS agents to Portland: report

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Police in Portland (screengrab)

The leader of the free world is intentionally causing chaos in Portland to help his struggling 2020 re-election campaign, The Washington Post reported Friday.

The story, titled, “Operation Diligent Valor: Trump showcased federal power in Portland, making a culture war campaign pitch” was written by reporters Marissa J. Lang, Josh Dawsey, Devlin Barrett and Nick Miroff.

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“As statues of Confederate generals, enslavers and other icons tumbled from their pedestals amid protests last month, President Trump issued an executive order meant to break the cascade,” the newspaper reported. “It enlisted the Department of Homeland Security, created in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks to protect the country against external threats, to defend U.S. monuments and federal property against ‘anarchists and left-wing extremists’ who he said are advancing ‘a fringe ideology.'”

“The order signaled Trump’s eagerness to mobilize federal power against the societal upheaval that has coursed through America since George Floyd’s death,” the newspaper explained. “But Trump’s June 26 declaration came too late. The momentum of the protests was fading in many U.S. cities, and confrontations between federal authorities and civilians were becoming less frequent. Then Trump found Portland, according to administration and campaign officials.”

“Sinking in the polls over his handling of the coronavirus pandemic, Trump seized a chance to appear as a field general in a wider American cultural conflict over racial justice, police misconduct and the reexamination of American history and monuments,” the newspaper explained. “In Portland, he found a theater for his fight.”

Trump has been closely monitoring the DHS response to protests.

“Trump has taken a keen interest in tactical operations against the protesters in recent weeks, according to White House and administration officials at the center of the response, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations. When the fog of tear gas is thickest here in the wee hours of the morning, the president is sometimes up early on the other side of the country, calling Wolf for real-time updates from the front,” the newspaper explained.

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But it may all be backfiring on Trump.

“The scenes of militarized federal forces on the city’s streets have stunned many Americans and unnerved former Homeland Security officials, but they have not quieted the protests. In many ways, the agents and the barricades they have erected have re-energized the demonstrators and have converted the courthouse into a proxy for the Trump administration itself,” the newspaper explained.

Read the full report.


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2020 Election

Lots of red hats — but not many COVID masks — at Bedminster ‘Cops for Trump’ event with the president

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Enhanced unemployment benefits have expired and there is still no deal on the next COVID-19 stimulus package, but the president of the United States left Washington, DC on Friday for yet another weekend at Trump National Golf Club Bedminster.

"This weekend’s trip to Trump National Bedminster is the president’s 23rd since taking office, and will increase his golf-related taxpayer tab to $142 million in travel and security expenses," HuffPost White House corresponded S.V. Dáte reported Friday. "Trump has already spent 268 days on golf courses that he owns in his 1,303 days in office, of which 85 have been at Bedminster."

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2020 Election

Trump declares that Fox News is ‘no longer the big deal’ in the 2020 presidential campaign

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Donald Trump on Friday reflected on what he sees as the key differences between his 2016 and 2020 presidential campaigns.

"The biggest difference between the Presidential Race in 2020 and that of 2016 is the 2016 candidate, Crooked Hillary Clinton, was much smarter and sharper than Slow Joe, we have even more ENTHUSIASM now, and [Fox News] has become politically correct and no longer the big deal!" Trump tweeted after arriving at his Bedminster Golf Club for the weekend.

Trump has grown increasingly frustrated by the network and its polls, which gave him more bad news on Thursday.

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2020 Election

‘Very good news’: Law prof praises Kentucky’s bipartisan compromise to allow everyone to vote by mail

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The state of Kentucky was praised on Friday after a bipartisan agreement was reached to expand voting by mail during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"Any Kentucky voter wary of the risk of COVID-19 will be able to vote in the Nov. 3 general election by mailing in an absentee ballot. Voters will also have the option of casting a ballot in person during the three weeks leading up to the election, or waiting until Election Day," the Lexington Herald-Leader reported Friday.

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