Oregon Republicans criticize Gov. Brown's response to violence at Portland protests

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown announces a "Stay home, stay healthy" order to all Oregonians during a Friday night news conference, March 20, 2020. Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler and Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury joined her. (KATU Photo)

(ANN) PORTLAND, Ore. — Members of the Oregon Senate Republicans signed a letter to Governor Kate Brown addressing her response to days of unrest in downtown Portland.

For nearly two months, groups have been gathering at locations across the city to protest police brutality and racial injustice.

In the overnight hours, continued protests near the U.S. Federal Courthouse and Portland’s Justice Center have devolved into violent clashes between demonstrators and law enforcement, often being deemed unlawful assemblies or riots.

RELATED| Amid 2 months of unrest, downtown Portland residents want answers

U.S. Attorney - District of Oregon Billy J. Williams says federal agents, who are currently at the courthouse to protect the government-owned property,arrested 22 people through the course of the last weekend.

On Tuesday, Oregon Senate Republicans sent an open letter criticizing Governor Brown, saying she's not doing enough to end the vandalism and violent clashes between protesters and authorities.

“Your inaction and failed leadership have made Portland an embarrassment to the state and country as violent anarchists plague the streets night after night, compromising the safety of Oregonians,” said Fred Girod (R-Stayton). “After more than 60 days of rioting, not one Democrat elected official in Oregon has denounced the violence and destruction. Ignoring the violent perpetrators undermines the peaceful protests.”

The letter continues, “Elected officials take a vow to uphold the U.S. Constitution and Oregon Constitution. You do not take that responsibility seriously as you have been confronted with clear evidence of violent anarchists engaging in unconstitutional activities that result in significant harm to law enforcement and jeopardize the safety of Oregonians.”

You can read the full letter here:

During a segment of "Your Voice, Your Vote," Governor Brown accused the acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security and Trump administration of coming to Portland this week for a photo-op to "score political points with their base" in a scathing response to the federal government's presence in downtown Portland.

In our one-on-one interview, she said that federal officers are escalating the violence in downtown Portland, and she reiterated her call for them to leave.

Meanwhile, Mayor Ted Wheeler and City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty are calling for an immediate meeting with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security after continued clashes between federal officers and protesters in part of downtown Portland.

They say they want to meet with Acting Secretary Chad Wolf to discuss a 'cease-fire' and removal of federal agents from the city.

We have reached out to Governor Brown's office for comment, but have not heard back.