Police arrested 112 people in Portland, Oregon this weekend after demonstrations against the recent election of Republican Donald Trump in the city’s downtown area turned violent. But at least 69 of them did not vote on Election Day — or were not even registered to vote in the state, according to an analysis by local station KGW.
KGW compared the names and ages of those arrested Saturday to Multnomah County Elections Division’ state voter logs and found that 34 of them did not cast a vote last Tuesday, and an additional 35 were not registered to vote. Only 25 of the arrested protesters voted, though KGW has yet to verify the remaining 17. The final suspect voted out of state.
The arrests took place after activists walked from the Pioneer Courthouse Square to City Hall in downtown Portland, where they threw objects at police officers and blocked train lines. Police in the area sprayed tear gas at the protesters in an effort to scatter the crowd, according to state newspaper The Oregonian.
Last week's general election saw a lower national voter turnout than both of the previous elections. The number of voters nationwide actually rose by 1.4 million from 2012, but the population grew. Only 57 percent of eligible voters ended up casting a ballot as compared with 58.2 percent in 2012 and 61.6 percent in 2008, according to Five Thirty Eight.
Though more than 2 million people in Oregon voted on Election Day and broke the state’s record, one in five eligible voters still did not cast a ballot. President Barack Obama touched on that subject Monday evening while speaking in the White House’s briefing room to address the press before traveling overseas.
“Hopefully, it’s a reminder that elections matter. Voting counts,” he said. “I don’t know how many times we have to relearn this lesson because we ended up having 43 percent of the country not voting.”
Meanwhile, the country continues to see protests against the president-elect. Large-scale demonstrations have occurred in major cities like New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles.
Oregon’s unruly protests have garnered much attention thanks to Saturday's arrests and the shooting of a protester that same night. The shooting occurred during an altercation between an unidentified demonstrator and an armed man on Morrison Bridge in Portland. The protester survived.
Demonstrations in Oregon veered in a more peaceful direction following the arrests and shooting. Protesters gathered to hold a vigil for the shooting victim on Sunday.
Democrat Hillary Clinton won Oregon, taking of 51.7 percent of the state to Trump’s 41.1 percent. Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson took 4.8 percent of the vote, and Green Party nominee Jill Stein took 2.5 percent.