Lankford Spotlights False Reports about Federal Agents in Portland
CLICK HERE to watch Lankford’s Q&A.
WASHINGTON, DC – Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today participated in a Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing with Department of Homeland Security Acting Secretary Chad Wolf entitled, “Oversight of DHS Personnel Deployments to Recent Protests.” Lankford asked Acting Secretary Wolf to thank members of his law enforcement teams on the ground in Portland, Oregon, and around the country for enduring very dangerous situations amid a persistent public smear campaign of their work to protect federal buildings in Portland specifically. Lankford directly asked several questions of Acting Secretary Wolf about insinuations or assumptions of federal law enforcement’s behavior and conduct surrounding these protests and whether some of the rumors circulating in the media are true. Lankford provided a recap on Facebook today following the hearing. CLICK HERE to access the DHS “myth vs. fact” page regarding law enforcement Portland.
On the situation facing federal law enforcement in Portland
(00:12 – 01:07) Lankford: I am astounded at some of the conversations I have heard in this hearing but most certainly over the past several weeks about the men and women who are serving there every single night. Please tell their families, thank you. They are sending out their loved ones to be able to travel to Portland, and as we discuss peaceful protests across the street, your law enforcement have had 277 injuries. So while folks here want to blame the police, please tell them thank you. They’ve suffered chemical burns, being hit with bricks, being shot with pellet guns, had large-scale fireworks being fired sideways into them and mortar rounds. They’ve had laser pointers shot at their eyes so that they lose their sight, while members of this Committee talk about peaceful protests and about your law enforcement being the problem. I don’t think you’re agents are the problem. I think they’re defending federal property, which is what this Congress originally told them to do.
On accusations of federal law enforcement attacking peaceful protesters and not properly identifying themselves as law enforcement
(02:23 – 02:48) Lankford: I’ve heard over and over again that you’re federal law enforcement are going out on the streets and harming peaceful protesters. Are you cracking down on peaceful protests?
Wolf: Absolutely not.
Lankford: Your federal agents are being accused over and over again as saying they’re not marked as police, they’re just unmarked, wandering the streets, and they have no police markings. Do you have federal law enforcement in Portland that are not labeled as police on their uniforms?
Wolf: Absolutely not.
On federal law enforcement not wearing nametags while on duty
(03:29 – 04:00) Lankford: So it’s also been accused they’re not wearing their nametags. So tell me a little bit about that.
Wolf: So they’re not wearing their nametags because of the doxing we have seen for a number of agents, not only their personal information is put out on Twitter or social media, but individuals are showing up at their homes, and their families are being identified. So what we did is we pulled off of their nametags the ‘John Smith,’ we pulled that off. But we did put a unique identifier, an alpha-numeric, numbers and letters on their uniform so that we could keep track of them, the accountability for them. But their name is not specifically on there.