Jordan demands info on Biden admin’s efforts to protect property, feds in Portland

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) on Monday sent letters to two Cabinet members, asking for answers regarding the Biden administration’s efforts to protect federal property and personnel in Portland, Oregon from violent left-wing rioters.

In the letters to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and Attorney General Merrick Garland, Jordan pointed out, “Anarchists and violent left-wing extremists continue to vandalize and destroy federal property in Portland, Oregon.”

“The vandalism and destruction of federal and private property that began last summer in Portland,” the Ohio Republican also said, “has not stopped.”

The Daily Caller was the first to report on the pair of letters.

Following the death of George Floyd in May of last year, the city faced one hundred consecutive nights of violence. The letters noted that, earlier this month, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had to re-install fencing around the Mark O. Hatfield United States Courthouse days after left-wing rioters attacked and tried to set fire to the building. Jordan also mentioned other instances of violence at and vandalism to federal property.

The letters also cited journalist Andy Ngô’s February 24 testimony before the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security, at which he said that “antifa and left-wing anarchists” in Portland have “developed a riot apparatus that included streams of funding for accommodation, travel, riot gear, and weapons, which resulted in a murder, hundreds of arson attacks, mass injuries, and mass property destruction.”

Jordan also noted Ngô’s warning that Congress should not be “downplaying antifa’s violent extremism.”

“The Biden administration has a duty to ensure federal law is enforced and that both federal property and federal personnel are protected and kept safe from violent extremists in Portland,” the Ohio lawmaker wrote in the letters.

Jordan’s letter to Mayorkas requested an explanation on what the DHS or the Federal Protective Service (FPS) is doing “to protect federal personnel and federal property” in the city, as well as explanations on what is being done to prevent further destruction to federal property and whether the DHS “still believes that it has the authority, the mission, and the intent to enforce federal law and protect federal property in Portland.”

In the letter to Garland, Jordan requested an explanation about the Department of Justice‘s (DOJ) efforts to identify and prosecute individuals attacking federal property and law enforcement. The lawmaker also asked for the DOJ’s plans to prevent further attacks, information on whether the DOJ still faults the city for letting the unrest happen, and inquired if the department still believes its previous description of “peaceful protesters.”

Jordan asked that Mayorkas and Garland provided the requested information, in writing, no later than 5:00 p.m. on April 12. Once that has happened, the lawmaker asked for them to provide a staff-level briefing.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.