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Dozens Of Minneapolis Businesses Consider Leaving, Cite Possibility Of Police Being Dismantled

Dozens of Minneapolis businesses are considering leaving downtown, citing concerns about the possibility of the police department being dismantled, CBS Minnesota reported.

A survey by the Downtown Council shows 45 business owners say they are considering leaving downtown Minneapolis because of the lack of people working and socializing in the area and also the idea that the police department could be dismantled, CBS reported.

One of the surveyed businesses that is considering leaving employs 600 people, deepening fears that the city could take another major blow to employment, which was hit by the coronavirus pandemic. The Council did not divulge which businesses are considering leaving.

“This is by far the biggest challenge that I’ve ever had in my 20 years of owning businesses downtown,” Erik Forsberg, who owns multiple restaurants in downtown Minneapolis told CBS. Forsberg’s restaurants have been reportedly closed since the pandemic began and crime multiplied.

“We are seeing a lot of restaurants take a hit right now,” realtor Kris Lindahl says, adding that he expects restaurants to downsize and possibly share kitchens, according to CBS.

“We are seeing business owners wanting to eliminate the overhead, especially in a world where it looks like there’s going to be a more hybrid approach happening – and people are going to be  working from home – business owners and companies are looking to downsize,” he continued.

The president of the Downtown Council, Steve Cramer, has explained to council members that the mention of dismantling the Minneapolis police department has deterred business owners. He believes there will still be police, but they would have crisis support.

Efforts to dismantle the Minneapolis Police Department began after the May 25 death of George Floyd, who died after an officer knelt on his neck for several minutes.

The City Council has pushed to replace the police department with a “Department of Community Safety and Violence Prevention,” which has an approach that hasn’t been fully defined but would prioritize “a holistic, public health-oriented approach” that called for a division of licensed peace officers, allowing for some armed police officers.

However, a Minneapolis commission decided Wednesday that it would take more time to review the City Council amendment to dismantle the police department after concerns that the process was being rushed. “The council says ‘Trust us. We’ll figure it out after this is approved. Trust us.’ We’ll I don’t, and we shouldn’t,” Berry Clegg, chairman of the Charter Commission said according to CBS News.

The stalling of the amendment by the commission means the issue will not appear on ballots in November, since there will be no final decision by the deadline.

Violent crime in Minneapolis has surged to levels not seen in several years, as the number of police officers on the street is scaled back. Officers have reportedly also taken longer to respond to 911 calls, in part because of the shrinking size of the force, Democratic Mayor Jacob Frey said according to MPR News.

COLUMN BY

MARLO SAFI

Culture reporter.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

‘They Are Terrorists’: DHS Says Investigations Into ‘Criminal Rioters’ Continue

A senior official from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said Thursday that rioters across America are under active observation and that “hundreds” of ongoing federal investigations are focusing on “criminal rioters.”

“So there are hundreds of federal investigations running into these criminal rioters, that’s what they are,” Acting Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli told BlazeTV. “They are terrorists.” He informed the media outlet that most of the investigations are still in progress and that details have not been released to the public.

President Donald Trump and Attorney General William Barr announced Wednesday that 200 federal agents were heading to Chicago and Kansas City, respectively, to “help save lives,” in Barr’s words.

When asked if federal authorities are attempting to discover whether riots and looting across America are being coordinated by certain groups, Cuccinelli told BlazeTV that “we are looking at anywhere there is organization behind criminal activity.”

“Now, realize, that a group that calls itself Black Lives Matters in Washington may not be connected to a group that calls itself Black Lives Matter in Minneapolis,” the acting deputy secretary observed. “So we have to connect the dots evidentially, not just in terms of them taking similar positions. They have to coordinate action to count as a group.”

He noted that DHS continues to gather and assess that kind of intelligence.

Protests and riots in Portland have resulted in tens of millions of dollars in damages to the community, according to the Portland Tribune.

Despite almost 60 days of nightly rioting in Portland, political leaders there are resisting federal assistance.

Democratic Oregon Rep. Earl Blumenauer said Monday that “Portland, Oregon is not out of control” during a speech on the House floor. A demonstration began peacefully Thursday night, but soon deteriorated into chaos with crowds shouting, “Pigs go home.”

COLUMN BY

DAVID KRAYDEN

Ottawa bureau chief. Follow David on Twitter. Send tips to Krayden@dailycaller.com.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

US Will Designate Antifa As A Terrorist Organization, President Trump Says

The United States will officially designate Antifa as a terrorist organization, President Donald Trump announced Sunday on Twitter.

The move comes following days of protests, riots, looting and violence across the country in response to the police-custody death of George Floyd. Reports from Minneapolis, Minnesota — the origin of the unrest — suggest large numbers of Antifa members are acting as catalysts for violence and looting.

“Antifa” is short for “anti-fascists,” and the group has been responsible for violence at dozens of protests in recent years.

Attorney General Bill Barr confirmed on Saturday that his Justice Department would be actively prosecuting activists who crossed state lines to participate in protests and riots. Leaders in Minneapolis and Washington, D.C. credited these out-of-state actors with instigating most of the violence.

“Unfortunately, with the rioting that is occurring in many of our cities around the country, the voices of peaceful protests are being hijacked by violent radical elements,” Barr said, according to Politico. “In many places it appears the violence is planned, organized, and driven by far left extremist groups and anarchic groups using Antifa-like tactics.”

There is some precedent for declaring terrorist organization domestically. San Francisco declared the NRA a domestic terror organization in 2019, but the announcement had no legal ramifications beyond expressing the opinion of the city. It is unclear what legal teeth a federal declaration against Antifa would have.

Trump made the announcement after congratulating the National Guard for its work to quell violence in Minneapolis on Saturday night. Authorities there reported they successfully enforced a curfew, something dozens of other cities failed to do.

Trump also criticized the media’s coverage of the riots, saying their work is contributing to the unrest.

COLUMN BY

ANDERS HAGSTROM

White House correspondent.

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