Wheeler, Iannarone differ on using tear gas at protests

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PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Once again Ted Wheeler and Sarah Iannarone faced off in a mayoral public forum, a 40-minute event hosted by “The Appeal” and “NowThis.”

The mayor and the challenger share their views on homelessness, the police budget, police accountability, police reform and differed in the use of tear (CS) gas.

Wheeler said one problem he faces is that other leaders on the county and state levels don’t support his ban on CS gas.

“It’s a good idea not to use CS gas in residential neighborhoods,” Wheeler said. “We don’t know the public health of the environmental impacts and, to make it clear, there are other strategies that are available to police officers beyond deploying CS gas to clear an area. It’s not the only strategy.”

Iannarone disagreed. Removing the police’s ability to use CS gas only leads them to using batons and dragging people through the streets, she said.

“You’ve seen the videos. You’ve seen them beating journalists, medics, legal observers in their streets,” Iannarone said. “There is a reason why people are protesting Portland police and until Mayor Wheeler gets the police under control I believe the protests will continue.”

Watch the entire Wheeler/Iannarone forum

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