A Portland Republican is thinking about using militia groups as security personnel to protect his fellow GOP members following a recent, racially-motivated stabbing inside a rail train last Friday.
Multnomah County GOP chair James Buchal said in an interview with The Guardian that Republicans shouldn’t be cowed out of the public square because tensions are at a high.
“I am sort of evolving to the point where I think that it is appropriate for Republicans to continue to go out there,” he said. “And if they need to have a security force protecting them, that’s an appropriate thing too.”
Specifically, Buchal mentioned groups like the “Oath Keepers and the Three Percenters.”
“Yeah. We’re thinking about that. Because there are now belligerent, unstable people who are convinced that Republicans are like Nazis,” said Buchal.
The man responsible for the stabbing is 35-year-old Jeremy Joseph Christian, an alleged white supremacist. Christian killed two men and wounded another after all three confronted Christian who was yelling racial and religious epithets at two young women on the train.
Buchal seems to believe that the far left will blame Republicans for the acts of the knife-wielding Christian.
Rose City Antifa, a Portland-based antiracist group, criticized Buchal’s idea.
“That the GOP need[s] to bring in private armed security rather than rely on Portland Police speaks volumes on their stance against ‘violence’,” said the group in a statement.
“These private security elements of the extreme right claim to be supporting ‘free speech’ when in reality their main goal is directing violence and hate speech towards antifascist protesters and activists while protecting white supremacists,” it continued.
There’s nothing wrong with private security. Of course, when that security has an overt political agenda, that’s where things get a little dicey. But there’s another issue in play, at least within the city, and that is certification.
“It’s a complex issue,” said Portland police bureau spokesman, Sergeant Peter Simpson. “Private security in Oregon needs to be certified by the state. That said, people showing up to assist do not. We don’t advocate bringing in outsiders to police an event.”
Anyways, what are your thoughts? Should Portland Republicans use Oath Keepers and Three Percenters fro armed security? Should they just rely on the local police for protection?