Trump, Portland mayor blame each other for violence after protester shot

Their war of words followed Saturday's shooting death of a man identified as a member of a right-wing group called Patriot Prayer.

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President Donald Trump called Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler a fool on Twitter, demanding that he end the violence that left a right-wing protester dead in Oregon’s largest city. 

During a press conference Sunday afternoon, Wheeler spoke directly to the president. “That’s classic Trump. Mr. President, how can you think that a comment like that, if you’re watching this, is in any way helpful?” 

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“It’s an aggressive stance, it is not collaborative,” he continued. “I certainly reached out, I believe in a collaborative manner, by saying earlier that you need to do your part, and I need to do my part, and then we both need to be held accountable.”

“Do you seriously wonder, Mr. President, why this is the first time in decades that America has seen this level of violence?” Wheeler asked. “It’s you who have created the hate and the division.”

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“It’s you who have not found a way to say the names of Black people killed by police officers, even as people in law enforcement have,” the mayor added. “And it’s you who claimed that white supremacists are good people.” 

“You’ve tried to divide us more than any other figure in modern history, and now, you want me to stop the violence that you helped to create,” Wheeler continued. “What America needs is for you to be stopped so that we can come back together as one America.”

The mayor said that all people must pull together to stop racism and violence. 

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Trump, characteristically, responded almost immediately, calling Wheeler a “wacky Radical Left Do Nothing Democrat Mayor of Portland, who has watched great death and destruction of his City during his tenure.” 

The war of words followed the shooting death Saturday of a man identified as Aaron “Jay” Danielson, a member of a right-wing group called Patriot Prayer. Trump tweeted “Rest in Peace, Jay!” retweeting an image of the man’s body on the ground. 

The president did not tweet condolences to the two men shot and killed by 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse last week in Wisconsin. 

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