The White House confirmed on Sunday that Donald Trump is planning to travel to Kenosha, Wisconsin, to meet with law enforcement agencies and survey the damage caused by nearly a full week of riots.
President Trump sent federal law enforcement officers to the embattled city earlier this week, and the protests remained largely peaceful on Saturday.
Law and order
President Trump has increased calls for law and order after riots broke out in Kenosha when police shot Jacob Blake in the back multiple times while trying to arrest him.
Black Lives Matter activists seized on Blake’s shooting as the perfect opportunity to violently demonstrate against police violence in the small city on the border of Wisconsin and Illinois.
The protests turned deadly on Tuesday, though, when 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse shot two protesters in what the young man’s lawyers have described as an act of self-defense.
Donald Trump targeted the violence in Kenosha and other American cities in his Republican National Convention speech on Thursday, declaring, “if the Democrat Party wants to stand with anarchists, agitators, rioters, looters, and flag burners, that is up to them, but I, as your president, will not be part of it.”
White House Deputy Press Secretary Judd Deere confirmed on Saturday that the president plans to travel to Kenosha on Tuesday.
President Trump has maintained a hardline stance against protesters and rioters in Kenosha, but also said on Friday that Jacob Blake’s shooting “was not a good sight” and that he would be “looking into it.”
As law enforcement in Kenosha appears to have quelled the violence since Saturday, the spotlight turned to Portland, Oregon, which is nearing 100 consecutive days of rioting and violence.
According to a Breitbart report, “A turbulent day of riots and violence in Portland turned deadly Saturday night, as a man was shot and killed after an explosion of gunfire.” Police have yet to confirm if the shooting is actually related to the anti-police demonstrations.
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler has repeatedly refused Trump’s offers to send in federal law enforcement, preferring to allow the violence to terrorize the city for months.
Wheeler sent a strongly-worded letter to Donald Trump on Friday repudiating Trump’s offer to help quell the violence. “On behalf of the City of Portland: No thanks,” Wheeler sniped. “We don’t need your politics of division and demagoguery. Portlanders are onto you. We have already seen your reckless disregard for human life in your bumbling response to the COVID pandemic. And we know you’ve reached the conclusion that images of violence or vandalism are your only ticket to reelection.”