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U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Hates Portland

Portland has mastered the art of frustrating and confounding federal immigration officials.

Portland has mastered the art of frustrating and confounding federal immigration officials.

In an email exchange WW obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request, one U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement official captured the federal disdain for our city and state, describing Oregon as a "liberal dumpster." Sheriff Mike Reese has frustrated ICE agents by denying their requests for mug shots, fingerprints and jail rosters. Protesters shut down a federal building where immigration officials worked last summer, and Mayor Ted Wheeler told the police to leave the demonstrators alone unless someone's life was in danger.

Perhaps most significantly, one elected official who represents Portland has made a name for himself as a one-man demolition squad chipping away at ICE's foundation.

U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) has arguably come closest to toppling the federal immigration enforcement agency. Last summer, he forced the public to confront the Department of Homeland Security over its family separation policy by showing up at a child detention center in Texas and live-streaming as the guards called the cops on him. Then, last month, he revealed leaked internal DHS documents that showed the agency intentionally separated families and put kids in cages in order to discourage people from seeking asylum at the U.S. border.

"Americans should be outraged," he said in a statement last June, "that our taxpayer dollars are being used to inflict spiteful and traumatizing policies on innocent children."

1. Because we're not afraid of public displays of affection…

2. Because women are in charge…

3. Because our local theater scene tells true, inspiring Oregon stories…

4. Because Kevin Calabro and Lamar Hurd make even Blazer losses fun…

5. Because we're still No. 1 in semi-factual superlatives…

6. Because we have a sixth quadrant now…

7. Because the hottest rapper in the game is obsessed with us…

8. Because Oregon is gradually getting more diverse, and in unexpected ways…

9. Because we can work it out…

10. Because we helped jump-start the movement that's changing the tech 
industry…

11. Because if you want to, you can dance to…

12. Because we're so sex positive, you can take a class on…

13. Because we're working to become a bike haven again…

14. Because after walking across Antarctica, I can still come back 
to my favorite dive bar…

15. Because the Blazers' game-day posters are the coolest collectibles in sports…

16. Because our airport is Beervana…

17. Because our fake fast food beats the real thing…

18. Because the Big Pipe is keeping poop out of the river…

19. Because we're making an effort to diversify the cannabis industry…

20. Because we finally have a virtual reality playland…

21. Because we have nicer weather than Hawaii (no, really)…

22. Because Basic Rights Oregon is fighting for LGTBQ+ rights—and winning…

23. Because Portland State's gym just underwent an awesome makeover…

24. …and the courthouse is getting one, too.

25. Because our hotel bars are some of the best bars in the city…

26. Because you'll spend less time in jail here than the national average…

27. Because we make some of the best guitar pedals in the biz…

28. Because our Curry is better than that other Curry…

29. Because we're Raptorville USA…

30. Because ICE hates us…

31. Because everything that dies someday comes back…