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Pro-Trump Gathering In Eugene Sees Fights, Arrests

Brian Bull

A pro-Trump “Stand Against Socialism” rally was held in Eugene Saturday afternoon.  There was some violence early into the event.

Eugene Police were quick to declare a riot after several Trump activists fought with counterprotesters outside the federal courthouse.  Some members of the right-wing, nationalist group, The Proud Boys, were reportedly seen but dispersed early.  The crowd - initially put at about 70 people including Trump supporters, counterprotesters, and passersby - complied with EPD directions to disperse away from the busy intersection and back towards the courthouse steps.

Credit Brian Bull / KLCC
A pair of Trump supporters sit and listen to speeches criticizing Oregon Governor Kate Brown, the Democratic Party, and mainstream media.

The rest of the event saw a core group of about twenty Trump supporters. Several called for Governor Kate Brown’s arrest for her COVID-19 lockdowns; others repeated groundless claims that Biden stole the election from President Trump in key battleground states, then argued for tighter scrutiny of ballots.  

“…no barriers for poll inspectors to do their job and make sure that the results are legitimate, regardless of their COVID stipulations issued by petty, tyrannical governors,” said one speaker.

One other speaker talked of the right wing winning the culture wars, while EPD personnel kept a close - but low-profile presence.  One person waved a transgender rights flag opposite two men waving a Trump banner and an American flag.

As of 4:00pm Saturday, Eugene Police reported three arrests for disorderly conduct. The incident follows Wednesday’s violent occupation at the nation’s capitol building, where five people died.  

Copyright 2021, KLCC. 

Brian Bull is an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Oregon, and remains a contributor to the KLCC news department. He began working with KLCC in June 2016.   In his 27+ years as a public media journalist, he's worked at NPR, Twin Cities Public Television, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including four national Edward R. Murrow Awards (22 regional),  the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award, Best Radio Reporter from  the Native American Journalists Association, and the PRNDI/NEFE Award for Excellence in Consumer Finance Reporting.
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