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July 23, 2020

Chairman Thompson Announces Hearing Next Week on DHS Police Actions Threatening Our Democracy

(WASHINGTON) – Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security, announced that he will convene a Congressional hearing next Friday, July 31st, on the Department of Homeland Security’s police actions in Portland and how they are threatening our democracy. Last week, the Trump Administration, with the help of DHS, escalated its presence in Portland without the permission of local authorities.  Dressed like troops, Federal officers apparently teargassed and beat peaceful protesters exercising their First Amendment rights and unconstitutionally arrested individuals without probable cause. The Trump Administration has indicated it is imminently expanding these unwarranted and unwanted paramilitary operations to other U.S. cities.

Chairman Thompson has invited Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf to testify in public and under oath on the matter to explains his actions.

“Americans across the country are watching what the Administration is doing in Portland with horror and revulsion and are wondering if their cities could be President Trump’s next targets,” said Chairman Thompson. “The Administration’s actions are not only violent and clearly politically motivated, they are anathema to the rights guaranteed by the Constitution and a threat to every value for which our Republic stands. Despite this extreme escalation, DHS has given Congress no justification for its actions. That is why I am convening an urgent hearing on this matter.  The Administration must be accountable to Congress and the American people – and we must hear from Acting Secretary Wolf directly. The future of our democracy is at stake.”

Event details:

WHAT: House Committee on Homeland Security hearing: Homeland Insecurity: DHS Police Actions Endanger Our Democracy

WHEN: Friday, July 31st at 10am EDT

WHERE: 2167 Rayburn House Office Building

Updated info and livestream available here.

Past Actions:

Chairman Thompson Statement (July 17, 2020)

Request for DHS IG and DOJ IG Investigation (July 19, 2020)

Document Request to DHS (July 20, 2020)

DHS IG and DOJ IG Investigation Announced (July 23, 2020)

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Press Contact

Adam Comis at (202) 225-9978