President Trump suggested sending federal law enforcement into New York City and other cities "run by the same liberal Democrats" if the recent spikes in gun violence aren't quelled.
The subject arose in the Oval Office Monday after a reporter questioned the president on the use of federal troops in Portland, Oregon and his intention to implement similar tactics in other cities.
"New York was up 348 percent -- the crime rate. So the governor has to do something about it. And if the governor is not going to do something about, we'll do something about it," he said.
Data provided by the NYPD found 854 people injured from gun violence in New York City so far this year, that's a 78 percent from the 481 reported injuries from last year.
"And look at what's going on over there. The woman who was shot because she said, "Could you please not light off fire crackers?"" Trump said, pointing to a NY Post report on the death of a Brooklyn woman. According to the Post, Shatavia Walls was killed after confronting neighbors for setting off illegal fireworks on July 7.
NYPD officials confirmed a 33-year-old woman was shot in the chest and taken to Brookdale Hospital. The woman died at the hospital on July 17. No arrests have been made and the NYPD says an investigation is ongoing.
Trump named New York, as well as Chicago, Philadelphia, Detroit, Baltimore and Oakland as cities all "run by liberal Democrats" that could see increased federal law enforcement following the "fantastic" work done in Portland.
"They've been there three days, and they really have done a fantastic job in very short period of time. No problem. They grab them; a lot of people in jail," the president said. "These are people that hate our country. And we're not going to let it go forward."
Mayor Bill de Blasio reacted to the Trump's comments on Twitter Monday evening: "We’ve seen the chaos secret police are creating in Portland. We won’t let it happen here."
Demonstrations against systemic racism and police brutality have happened every day in Oregon's largest city since Minneapolis police killed George Floyd on May 25. The Rose City caught national attention last week following reports that federal agents were using tear gas to break up crowds and arresting protestors without warning or explanation.
Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum late Friday sued Homeland Security and the Marshals Service in federal court. The complaint says that unidentified federal agents have grabbed people off Portland’s streets “without warning or explanation, without a warrant, and without providing any way to determine who is directing this action.”
The administration has enlisted federal agents, including the U.S. Marshals Special Operations Group and an elite U.S. Customs and Border Protection team based on the U.S.-Mexico border, to protect federal property.
But Oregon Public Broadcasting reported this week that some agents had been driving around in unmarked vans and snatching protesters from streets not near the federal property, without identifying themselves.
Tensions also escalated after an officer with the Marshals Service fired a less-lethal round at a protester’s head on July 11, critically injuring him.
Democratic leaders, including Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-New York, and Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-New York, are seeking an investigation “into the use of federal law enforcement agencies by the Attorney General and the Acting Secretary of Homeland Security to suppress First Amendment protected activities in Washington, D.C., Portland, and other communities across the United States.”