Here's your daily roundup of all the latest local and national news. (Like our coverage? Please consider making a recurring contribution to the Mercury to keep it comin'!)
• Last night Mayor Ted Wheeler visited the nightly protest at the Federal Courthouse and Justice Center and got a face full of tear gas from the feds and an ear full of complaints from a crowd of thousands. Our Alex Zielinski breaks down why people are angry that our mayor—who gave the okay to gas protesters just a month ago—is now very anti-brutality.
Mayor Wheeler appeared shocked by federal officers' unprovoked use of tear gas.— Alex Zielinski (@alex_zee) July 23, 2020
But this was nothing new for protesters who’ve experienced the same attacks coming from the Portland Police Bureau—an agency Wheeler directly oversees—for the past 55 days. https://t.co/hCtEJW7WUM
• Don't miss top-notch local photographer Celeste Noche's great photo essay of a night with Riot Ribs, serving free food to protesters and the homeless while dodging munitions and tear gas from the feds.
• While we won't have the decision until later today, a federal judge seems to be leaning toward placing a restraining order that would stop federal cops from targeting and intimidating journalists and legal observers. (The Mercury is one of the plaintiffs in this lawsuit brought by the ACLU, btw.)
• Two federal inspector generals say they plan on investigating how the Justice Department and Homeland Security agents used force and detained protesters in Portland and Washington, DC.
• In other city politics news, the Mercury has published our endorsement for the August special election that will fill the council seat left vacant by the late Nick Fish, and we're encouraging you to vote for candidate Dan Ryan. But be sure to read why that's still a messy choice.
• After a week delay, Portland is ready to distribute $114 million in CARES Act money to renters, small businesses, the houseless, and more for COVID-related relief.
• UGH, NOT THESE SHITHEADS AGAIN: A sub-intelligent group of conservatives calling themselves "The Freedom Foundation" (eyeroll) is suing Gov. Kate Brown to reverse her current statewide mask rules that CLEARLY SAVE LIVES. Okay, starting now, let's ignore these ridiculous time-wasters, shall we?
IN NATIONAL NEWS:
• After seeing what has happened in Portland, Chicago activists groups are suing to stop federal officers from policing protests.
• First he moved the National Republican Convention from North Carolina to COVID-surging Florida, and now Trump is cancelling the convention's public events entirely after most people refused to attend... because... they didn't want to, like, DIE.
• A new poll shows that Florida voters are leaning more and more toward Biden and away from their governor, Ron DeSantis. HUH. WONDER WHY THAT IS?
• The White House has backed off from insisting that a payroll tax cut be included in the Senate's $1 trillion COVID-19 rescue package—a point that was causing lots of tension between the administration and the GOP—and yet the package has been held up again thanks to infighting about extending the $600 unemployment benefits for America that expires July 31.
Rep @AOC: "I do not need Rep. Yoho to apologize to me. Clearly he does not want to. Clearly when given the opportunity he will not & I will not stay up late at night waiting for an apology from a man who has no remorse over calling women & using abusive language towards women." pic.twitter.com/XKymFh3Oyf— CSPAN (@cspan) July 23, 2020
• Meanwhile after a plateau lasting four months, unemployment claims are spiking again on a national scale—just in time for those $600 federal payouts to run out at the end of the week.
• A whopping 915,000 new cases of coronavirus popped up across America in the last two weeks, which is more than the US reported in the entire month of June.
• Meanwhile in Washington state, Gov. Jay Inslee is tightening restrictions throughout the state, shutting down indoor service at bars, tightening regulations on restaurants, prohibiting wedding receptions, and more.
• Today in "absolutely UN-shocking headlines": "Facebook ignored racial bias research, employees say."
• In sports, it's opening day for baseball! Put me in, coach, I'm ready to... get coronavirus? "Nationals star Juan Soto tests positive for coronavirus ahead of season opener."
• THE WEATHER REPORT: Partial clouds and lots of sun for tomorrow with a high of 75.
• And finally, as long as you're donating to the Portland Mercury, we also wouldn't refuse a baby Red Panda. Just sayin'.
the baby pic.twitter.com/Eb8q0AgBsN— Oregon Zoo (@OregonZoo) July 23, 2020