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Demonstrators listen to a speaker in downtown Portland the evening of Thursday, June 30.
Demonstrators listen to a speaker in downtown Portland the evening of Thursday, June 30. Mathieu Lewis-Rolland

Good morning, Portland! And I sincerely mean that because, for the first time in weeks, no one was tear gassed last night for exercising their First Amendment rights! The bar has been set high, folks. Let's all take one deep breath of non-spicy air together and dive into this morning's news:


— Just when 2020 was starting to feel like the most uneventful year in decades, a natural disaster has come along to shake things up. Hurricane Isaias whipped through Puerto Rico yesterday and now has its sights set on the Florida coastline, forcing some COVID-19 testing sites to close in anticipation.

— The third investigation into the 2014 death of 18-year-old Michael Brown by former Ferguson, Missouri cop Darren Wilson has, again, let Wilson off the hook. Civil rights leaders and Brown's family had hoped this new investigation—led by the county's first Black prosecutor—would finally hold Wilson accountable for Brown's death. Instead, it's reopened wounds.

— Here's Obama advocating for allowing prisoners the right to vote at John Lewis' funeral (which is great but also maybe he could have said this when he was President of the United States?).

— As celebrated earlier, Portland protesters saw zero clouds of tear gas and little police interaction last night as Oregon State Police (OSP) replaced the feds guarding the Mark Hatfield Federal Courthouse. OSP remained inside the courthouse as protesters chanted, gave speeches, and lit a few bonfires in the street Thursday evening.

— While this law enforcement tradeoff seems to be working, it's still unclear if it keeps Portland police officers from working indirectly with federal officers. Oh, and Mayor Ted Wheeler is sorry about the tear gas.

— Local protest livestreamer the Portland Police Bureau has been legally barred from live-streaming videos from the nightly protests—at least for the time being. Turns out that sharing the identities of people who haven't committed a crime isn't legal? Hm.

— After hearing from Trump that all Portland protesters are "anarchists and agitators," AP reporters researched 200 people who'd been arrested in Portland by local and federal police during the last two months to find that... they really aren't. Good luck trying to convince him otherwise, guys!

— Meanwhile, the Washington Post stumbled upon evidence that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been keeping "intelligence reports" on journalists who leaked DHS documents about the feds' recent work in Portland. DHS' top boy Chad Wolf claims he knew nothing about this. Great job, Chad!


— One big yikes:


— The feds are also trying to overturn a restraining order that bars them from using force/arrest to keep journalists and legal observers (who aren't committing a crime) from doing their jobs at a protest. Their argument? Too many people who aren't really press are wearing "press" badges to protect them from indiscriminate police violence. I feel like this should raise more alarms about violent police than the protesters they're attacking.

— Gov. Kate Brown is reversing several counties' reopening plans for the first time since allowing regions to start relaxing precautions to slow the spread of COVID-19. On Thursday, Brown placed Umatilla County back under the original stay-at-home order, and booted Morrow County back to Phase 1. Both of these regions have seen an alarming uptick in cases since beginning to reopen.

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— Let's wrap with this video of Ammon Bundy, of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge Standoff fame, explaining to his followers why he supports BLM and Antifa and wants the police defunded.

P.s Bundy is still not a good person and should probably be in prison.