U.S. federal prosecutors have produced no evidence linking dozens of people arrested in anti-racism protests in Portland, Oregon, to the antifa or anarchist movements, despite President Trump’s assertions they are fueling the unrest, Reuters reports.
Newly obtained body-cam footage from two of the police officers charged in George Floyd’s death reveal more details of the horrific arrest that led to his death, the Daily Mail reports.
The video shows Floyd’s horror when one officer points a gun at his head as he begs not to be shot. The video also shows Floyd asking for compassion.
“For decades, conservative activists and leaders have warned that ‘jackbooted thugs’ from the federal government were going to come to take away Americans’ civil rights with no due process and no recourse. Now they’re here—but they’re deployed by a staunchly right-wing president with strong conservative support,” The Atlantic reports.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) voiced opposition to President Trump’s efforts to send federal law enforcement agents to Democratic-controlled cities.
Said Paul: “We cannot give up liberty for security. Local law enforcement can and should be handling these situations in our cities but there is no place for federal troops or unidentified federal agents rounding people up at will.”
A new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds Joe Biden leading Donald Trump on the issue of “crime and safety” by nine points, 50% to 41%.
Aaron Blake: “The finding echoes what we’ve seen from other pollsters. A Pew Research Center poll from mid-June showed Biden led Trump 46% to 43% on which candidate could ‘effectively handle law enforcement and criminal justice issues.’ A Kaiser Family Foundation poll from late June directly employed the ‘law and order’ phrasing, finding voters trusted Biden to handle maintaining it by a 51-41 margin — virtually identical to the Post-ABC poll.”
“To the extent that there is a law-and-order candidate at this point, it appears to be Biden.”
Earlier for members: Trump Doubles-Down on ‘Law and Order’ Message
The U.S. attorney in Oregon wants an investigation into “constitutionally questionable arrests in Portland” by officers from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, according to Oregon Public Broadcasting.
CNN: “Floyd sobbed as officers initially began pulling him from the vehicle he was in, and at one point officer Derek Chauvin appears to lean into pressure applied to Floyd’s neck. Floyd’s last words, which were not seen in a previously released transcript, were, ‘I can’t breathe.’”
President Trump told CBS News the killing of George Floyd was “terrible” but appeared to bristle when asked why Black Americans are “still dying at the hands of law enforcement in this country.”
Said Trump: “So are White people. So are White people. What a terrible question to ask. So are White people. More White people, by the way. More White people.”
He also said the Confederate flag was a freedom of speech issue: “All I say is freedom of speech. It’s very simple. My attitude is freedom of speech. Very strong views on the Confederate flag. With me, it’s freedom of speech. Very simple. Like it, don’t like it, it’s freedom of speech.”
“The first execution to be carried out by the federal government in more than 17 years appeared to be nearing again Tuesday after a sharply-divided Supreme Court stepped in during the overnight hours to clear away a lower court injunction that blocked the Trump administration’s plan,” Politico reports.
“Just after 2 A.M. Tuesday, the justices issued a 5-4 decision overturning a lower-court order issued on Monday that halted the new federal lethal injection protocol on the grounds that it posed an unacceptable risk that the condemned prisoners would suffer severe pain or distress.”
“The first planned federal execution in 17 years is that of a convicted killer whose victims’ relatives have told President Trump that putting him to death would only compound their grief and have asked a federal judge to halt it,” the Wall Street Journal reports.
This is interesting from the new Monmouth poll: Just 18% of voters think “defund the police” means “get rid of the police,” while 77% believe it means a call to action to change the way police operate.
As Dave Weigel notes, the latest wave of Trump campaign ads portrays “Biden’s America” as one without any police.
Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions referred to Henry Louis Gates Jr., a celebrated Black Harvard University scholar, as “some criminal” in the New York Times Magazine.
CNN notes Gates had been wrongfully arrested by a police officer in 2009 as he tried to enter his own home. After the incident, then-President Barack Obama invited Gates and the arresting officer to the White House for a “beer summit.”
Said Sessions: “The police had been demoralized. There was all the Obama — there’s a riot, and he has a beer at the White House with some criminal, to listen to him.”
“President Trump returned from his Virginia golf course Saturday afternoon and turned his Twitter feed into a crime blotter,” the Washington Post reports.
“In less than five minutes, the president posted 15 fliers from the United States Park Police to his 82.6 million followers, complete with grainy photos of Americans suspected of vandalism at Lafayette Square. The images hearkened to the kinds of posters one would see on the wall of a local post office.”
“The president’s messages about protesters and vandals have continued apace, often in the early hours of the morning or the late hours of the evening when he is not surrounded by aides, but sometimes in interviews and executive orders.”
“Three members of a North Carolina police department have been fired after a department audit of a video recording captured one of the officers saying a civil war was necessary to wipe Black people off the map and that he was ready,” the Raleigh News & Observer reports.
One officer said he was going to buy a new assault rifle, and soon “we are just going to go out and start slaughtering them (expletive)” Blacks. “I can’t wait. God, I can’t wait.”
He added that he felt a civil war was needed to “wipe them off the (expletive) map. That’ll put them back about four or five generations.”
“Senate Republicans’ police reform bill failed to gain enough votes to advance the measure in a procedural vote Wednesday,” Axios reports.
“It highlights the extent of their split with Democrats, who have blasted the GOP bill as “not salvageable” for failing to properly address what they believe are fundamental issues, like the banning of police chokeholds.”
“The vote was 55 to 45. The bill needed 60 votes to proceed.”
“Democratic senators on Monday gave their strongest indications yet they may block the Republican police reform bill from coming to the floor, a risky move that could prevent any overhaul measure from being enacted this year over their party’s concerns that the GOP bill is too weak,” CNN reports.
In secretly recorded phone calls, a Mount Vernon, NY police officer admitted that some drug dealers operate in the city with “free rein,” Gothamist reports.
“Officer Campo’s claim that he personally safeguarded the drug dealer’s bundle of crack was made in one of several phone calls secretly recorded by Bovell between 2017 and this year. In that and another recording, Campo claimed that members of the department’s narcotics unit allowed favored drug dealers to sell with impunity, get deliveries, and control territory. In exchange, he said, the dealers, serving as confidential informants, gave them information leading to the arrests of their own low-level clients.”
Washington Post: “At a time when President Trump and other top U.S. officials have claimed — with little evidence — that leftist groups were fomenting violence, federal prosecutors have charged various supporters of a right-wing movement called the ‘boogaloo bois,’ with crimes related to plotting to firebomb a U.S. Forest Service facility, preparing to use explosives at a peaceful demonstration and killing a security officer at a federal courthouse.”