PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Hours after saying federal officers would remain in Portland, President Donald Trump continued to threaten their presence despite Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and Trump administration officials announcing they came to an agreement for their withdrawal from the city amid ongoing protests.
Speaking to members of the press on Wednesday morning, Trump said if local leaders do not secure the city, the administration would further intervene.
“If they don’t secure their city soon, we have no choice — we will have to go in there and clean it out. We will do it very easily. We are prepared to do it,” he said. “They need to clean out their city and do it right or we’re going to clean it out for them.”
Shortly after Trump made his remarks, however, Brown tweeted out a statement on the federal presence — announcing certain officers will, in fact, be withdrawn.
“After my discussions with VP Pence and others, the federal government has agreed to withdraw federal officers from Portland. They have acted as an occupying force & brought violence. Starting tomorrow, all Customs and Border Protection & ICE officers will leave downtown Portland,” she stated in one tweet.
Trump then took to Twitter himself and claimed if it weren’t for the deployment of federal officers a week ago, the city would have burned to the ground.
“If the Federal Government and its brilliant Law Enforcement (Homeland) didn’t go into Portland one week ago, there would be no Portland — It would be burned and beaten to the ground,” he said. “If the Mayor and Governor do not stop the Crime and Violence from the Anarchists and Agitators immediately, the Federal Government will go in and do the job that local law enforcement was supposed to do!”
The number of people participating in the protests significantly increased once the federal agents touched down in Portland.
“That plan includes a robust presence of Oregon State Police in downtown Portland,” he said.
“The Department will continue to maintain our current, augmented federal law enforcement personnel in Portland until we are assured that the Hatfield Federal Courthouse and other federal properties will no longer be attacked and that the seat of justice in Portland will remain secure. This has been our mission and objective since the violent, criminal activity began.”
The news comes after reports that Mayor Ted Wheeler was also in discussions with the White House to have troops removed. Other reports on Tuesday said more officers were being deployed.