Press Release ● Defense and National Security
For Immediate Release: 
July 21, 2020
Contact Info: 
Mariel Saez 202-225-3130
WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today on President Trump deploying federal law enforcement to Portland and Chicago and threatening to deploy federal law enforcement to other U.S. cities: 

“In deploying federal law enforcement to patrol American cities like Portland and Chicago and silence those exercising their First Amendment rights, Donald Trump is drawing from the playbook of the worst dictators of the past century.  Like others we have seen in some of the darkest periods of history, he is perpetuating a myth of disorder and mob violence – which is not occurring – to justify his deployment of heavily armed, anonymous, military-style agents into our communities who pull peaceful citizens into unmarked vehicles and detain them without lawful cause.  These actions are never justified in what is supposed to be the world’s greatest and freest democratic republic.  We have seen alarming examples in the past century of how this type of activity destroys democracies and brings fascists into dictatorial power.  As a nation, we must reject such tactics emphatically. 
 
“Donald Trump must not be allowed to bring fear into our communities in order to prop up his own failing Administration, and House Democrats will respond to his abuse of power and use of violence against Americans.  As a first step, the House adopted an amendment by Rep. Chrissy Houlahan to the defense authorization bill that would require all federal law enforcement personnel deployed in response to public protests to display their names and agencies visibly on their uniforms. House committees will continue to conduct oversight of this Administration’s actions, and I strongly support our Chairs’ request for an independent investigation by the Inspectors General of the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security. We will not allow this President’s militarization of law enforcement against Americans to go unchecked.
 
“I hope Republicans who share our concern about the Constitution and rule of law will join us in demanding answers and making sure that the separation of powers can protect the American people from misconduct by this Administration.  The people’s House will continue to stand up for the rights and freedoms of Americans, which are under threat by this presidency.”