Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler (D) is already making excuses for the city's Antifa groups by blaming "white [supremacist] organizations" and President Trump for potential riots on Election Day and the following days.
In several tweets, Wheeler said, "Local law enforcement has been working for several weeks to ensure we have adequate resources available to keep our community safe on and after Nov. 3. We’ve cancelled days off, put staff on call, and coordinated across all city bureaus to prepare for a wide range of scenarios."
In terms of who would be to blame for any riots, Wheeler only named "white [supremacist] organizations and the divisive rhetoric from Washington, D.C." as being the main culprits, despite the fact the overwhelming majority of riots Portland has experienced over the summer have come from Antifa and Black Bloc groups.
Given the heightened concerns about potential violence, particularly from white supremist organizations and the divisive rhetoric from Washington, D.C., the need for coordination and partnership takes on statewide significance. Oregon is likely to be a flashpoint.— Mayor Ted Wheeler (@tedwheeler) November 2, 2020
We should all be prepared for delayed results from the election. And, I urge everyone to focus on staying safe during this most important election.— Mayor Ted Wheeler (@tedwheeler) November 2, 2020
In October, the Portland Police Bureau and the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office laid out their plans to mitigate riots stemming from the election results.
"PPB and MCSO will be increasing staffing on Election Day and the days following as a precaution. While we promote and support the exercise of the First Amendment rights to assemble and engage in free speech, engagement in criminal activity will not be tolerated."
In a press release, they gave a few examples of criminal behavior "that will not be tolerated":
- Impeding transportation by blocking streets and vehicular traffic. Pedestrians on or blocking freeways or major thoroughfares is extremely dangerous and poses a life safety risk.
- Lighting fires and burning materials,
- Vandalizing and damaging property,
- Assaultive behavior
- Unlawful weapons possession and/or use