During a debate Wednesday night, Washington Governor Jay Inslee was caught telling boldfaced lies about what he knew about the “police-free” CHOP (aka CHAZ) occupation in Seattle when it was established last summer.
Inslee and Republican challenger Loren Culp sparred Wednesday night in a televised debate from separate rooms at the Olympia headquarters of TVW, the state’s government affairs channel.
Inslee was asked by debate moderator Brandi Kruse to explain comments he had made back in June, nearly 48 hours after police had abandoned the Seattle precinct that became the CHOP zone.
The so-called “autonomous zone,” which originally covered six city blocks and a park, was established by left-wing extremists on June 8, 2020. The lawless zone was finally cleared out on July 1, 2020, following the shooting deaths of two black teenagers.
When first asked about “CHAZ” on June 10, Inslee told reporters: “that’s news to me,” and “I haven’t heard anything about that.”
Kruse, a correspondent for Q13 News, asked the governor to explain how he could be “oblivious” to the fact that the police had abandoned a precinct, allowing a lawless occupation to be established in the state’s largest city.
“Yeah, well, listen—if you look at the facts of that situation, I couldn’t have been oblivious because I actually deployed the Washington state National Guard,” Inslee said, in an effort to sound tough on crime.
Kruse challenged the governor on his answer, reminding him of what he had said in June.
“You went on to say you hadn’t hear about it from any credible source nearly two days after CHOP happened,” Kruse noted. “You’re now saying you did know about CHOP.”
Inslee insisted that he “knew about CHOP” from the beginning, “that’s why I had state troopers ready to respond at the city’s request!” he added with a laugh.
Later, during a Q13 news report after the debate, Kruse noted that Inslee’s comment about sending in the National Guard wasn’t relevant to the CHOP situation, explaining: “the National Guard and also State Troopers came in in the lead-up of what became CHOP in some of the unrest in the days prior to that, and the absence of law enforcement, including the Guard and the State patrol, is what allowed CHOP to exist.”
"I could not have been oblivious to it": During last night's debate, @GovInslee said he knew about #CHOP (CHAZ) from the start, despite being panned back in June for claiming he did not. We try to sort through the answer. #waelex #q13fox pic.twitter.com/RHA4xBIoLa
— Brandi Kruse (@BrandiKruse) October 8, 2020
Like many other cities, Seattle saw violent riots following the death of George Floyd, the unarmed career criminal who died after a confrontation with Minneapolis police.
For nearly two weeks, starting on May 26, antifa-fueled mobs in Seattle clashed with the police, throwing glass bottled, rocks and other projectiles at officers. The police responded with pepper spray and tear gas to break up violent rioters.