Remember that white guy who carried an umbrella as he smashed a store’s windows in Minneapolis while someone’s video camera rolled, two months ago as George Floyd’s killing was setting off protests?
The guy local people on the scene were trying to persuade to stop, accusing him of ruining their peaceful protest?
In case you thought because of his all-black costume that he was a left-wing antifa, check out a new report in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. The newspaper quotes police as saying the masked “Umbrella Man” is suspected of being a white supremacist biker who was aiming to incite racial tensions.
If the police have the goods on him, that’s not good news for US President Donald Trump – who has been sending federal troops into Democratic Party-administered cities in a transparent attempt to portray himself as a law-and-order candidate fighting left-wing violence.
Destruction of the Auto Zone store “set off a string of fires and looting throughout the precinct and the rest of the city,” Sergeant Erika Christensen, a police arson investigator, is quoted as having written in a search warrant affidavit.
Before the man acted, she wrote, “the protests had been relatively peaceful. The actions of this person created an atmosphere of hostility and tension.”
Christensen added that she believes “that this individual’s sole aim was to incite violence.”
Police identified “Umbrella Man” thanks to a tip that arrived via e-mail last week, Christensen said.
The newspaper said it “could not independently verify the police account, which has so far only surfaced in the search warrant, and isn’t naming the man because so far he has not been charged with a crime. The man, who has a criminal history that includes convictions of domestic violence and assault, did not respond to messages seeking comment.”
Christensen’s affidavit said the e-mailed tip identified Umbrella Man as a 32-year-old Hells Angels biker. He “wanted to sow discord and racial unrest by breaking out the windows,” she wrote.
The story came out as at least one organization’s polling suggested Trump might be getting somewhere with his efforts to revive a flagging reelection campaign by taking on liberal mayors in Portland, Oregon, and other cities.
Rasmussen Reports on Saturday said that:
“President Trump ended the polling week with a daily job approval of 49%.
“Americans believe blacks are more racist than whites, Hispanics and Asians in this country.
“Most voters approve of President Trump’s decision to use federal agents to fight the growing violent crime in some major cities. They also believe many of these cities bring the criminal problems onto themselves.
“President Trump and likely Democratic nominee Joe Biden are now running neck-and-neck in Rasmussen Reports’ weekly White House Watch survey.
“Opposition is growing to efforts by the political left to defund the police, with most Americans convinced that such a move will lead to more violent crime.”
Rasmussen’s reputation is mixed, at best. “Rasmussen Reports deserves a lot of credit for its final, national poll of the 2016 presidential election, which had Hillary Clinton ahead by 2 percentage points, almost her exact margin of victory in the popular vote,” says Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight.com.
“But Rasmussen Reports polls are conducted by a Rasmussen spinoff called Pulse Opinion Research LLC, and state polls conducted by Rasmussen and Pulse Opinion Research over the past year or two have generally been mediocre,” Silver adds.
Let’s see whether those trends show up in other organizations’ polls – or whether Rasmussen’s polling turns up different results in this coming Saturday’s weekly wrap-up.