Trump Faults Democrats, Cities; Lockdowns Spread: Protest Wrap
(Bloomberg) -- Curfews are underway in Kenosha, Wisconsin, as well as Minneapolis and St. Paul in Minnesota.
In Washington D.C., where President Donald Trump held the final night of the Republican National Convention at the White House, the president referenced the protests in Kenosha and other cities and gave an unequivocal law-and-order message.
“In the strongest possible terms, the Republican Party condemns the rioting, looting, arson and violence we have seen in Democrat-run cities like Kenosha, Minneapolis, Portland, Chicago, and New York,” he said.
Several other speakers at the Republican convention repeated claims that the U.S. wouldn’t be safe if Trump loses to Democrat Joe Biden. Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, a Trump friend and adviser, claimed Democrats want to “execute their pro-criminal, anti-police policies.”
As Trump and others spoke, protesters marched outside the gates, honking horns and chanting slogans. Noise drifted over to the South Lawn and could occasionally be heard on the RNC’s television broadcast, but the show continued uninterrupted.
Meanwhile, Arizona, Alabama and Michigan are sending National Guard troops to Kenosha, Wisconsin, and may be ready to assist local officials as early as Friday, said Major General Paul Knapp, who commands the Wisconsin National Guard.
Protests against police brutality and racial inequality intensified earlier this week after a police officer in the southeastern Wisconsin city shot Jacob Blake, a Black man, seven times in the back.
“Blake’s shooting falls in a long and painful pattern of violence, and this is a pattern of violence that happens against Black lives too often across this country,” Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes said at a press briefing Thursday.
Kenosha County’s fourth night of curfew began at 7 p.m. central time. As tensions escalated, St. Paul, Minnesota, joined neighboring city Minneapolis -- where George Floyd was killed -- in a lockdown.
Raleigh Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin is imposing a 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew for the entire city for Friday and Saturday nights after protests were planned for North Carolina’s capital city on Friday night following Blake’s shooting. She voiced regret at not doing so earlier during the George Floyd protests that resulted in damage to downtown businesses.
The protests also spilled over into professional sports -- the NHL postponed two days of playoff games Thursday while some Major League Baseball games were also rescheduled, the Associated Press said.
NBA players have voted to resume the playoffs, avoiding the possibility that the season would end before a champion is crowned. Thursday’s three games will be postponed, but the players and league are aiming to restart games on Friday. The decision ends speculation that players would leave the so-called “bubble” in Orlando to join the national protests. It was reported Wednesday night that superstars LeBron James and Kawhi Leonard were pushing for players to continue their protests.
Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook, in a Twitter post, said the company stands with those who “refuse to accept the status quo” and referenced the WNBA, NBA and “all of those who will not tolerate another Jacob Blake.”
The ACLU called for the immediate resignation of Kenosha County Sheriff David Beth and Kenosha Police Chief Daniel Miskinis. In a statement, the group condemned their response “to both the attempted murder of Jacob Blake and the protests demanding justice for him. Their actions uphold and defend white supremacy, while demonizing people who were murdered for exercising their first amendment rights and speaking out against police violence.”
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- Kenosha Exposes Ugly Truth of Inequality in America’s Heartland
- Rittenhouse Fixated on Supporting Police Before Allegedly Killing Two
- Kenosha’s Upheaval Jolts Swing-State Politics for Trump, Biden
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