Billy Barr will defend use of federal agents to quell Portland protests

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Attorney General William Barr will defend the Justice Department’s use of federal law enforcement agents to quell protests in Portland, Oregon, in congressional testimony on Tuesday, saying attacks on the federal courthouse there represent “an assault on the government of the United States.”

“The most basic responsibility of government is to ensure the rule of law, so that people can live their lives safely and without fear. The Justice Department will continue working to meet that solemn responsibility,” Barr said in prepared remarks before the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives Judiciary Committee.

Tuesday will mark the first time that Barr has appeared before the House Judiciary Committee since taking the helm of the Justice Department in February of last year.

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