Portland Ore – City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty led a rally in front of Portland City Hall in a push for the city to withdraw from the Joint Terrorism Task Force. Hours later, the City Council voted 3-2 to withdraw after a lengthy debate. Hardesty and Commissioners Amanda Fritz and Chloe Eudaly voted to pull out, while Commissioner Nick Fish and Mayor Ted Wheeler voted to stay in the JTTF.

Statement from Renn Cannon, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Oregon:

The FBI’s mission is to protect the American people and uphold the Constitution. With the withdrawal of the city of Portland from the Joint Terrorism Task Force, that mission doesn’t change.

The agents, analysts, language specialists, legal experts and other professional staff of the FBI who work every day to keep our community safe will continue to do so, addressing threats of violence and criminal activity that impact our neighborhoods. To this end, the FBI will continue to partner formally with other members of the JTTF as well as informally with cities and counties across the state to share information and address threats as appropriate.

Robust discussions about law enforcement’s role in our society are valuable. Recognizing the fears that exist in the community, we will continue to visit with community leaders and work together to keep Oregon safe while addressing those factors that can drive a wedge between us.

I want the people of Oregon to know that the men and women of the FBI do their work with the utmost respect for and adherence to our shared Constitutional protections that allow us to speak, gather and worship freely no matter who we are or where we come from. I thank them for the work they do every day, and I thank the Portland Police officers who have joined us the past few years for their work in keeping our shared community safe.

— Renn Cannon, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Oregon