(CNSNews.com) - How long will downtown Seattle look like it does today, with protesters occupying city-owned land outside the now-abandoned East Seattle Police Precinct? CNN's Chris Cuomo asked the city's mayor that question on Thursday night.
"I don't know," Mayor Jenny Durkan said. "We could have the summer of love," she quipped, referring to the 1960s hippie movement in San Francisco.
"Tell that to the police who are supposed to be in that precinct," Cuomo said, as he prepared to end the interview.
"Hey, Chris," the mayor said. "The police will be policing in there. I want to be very clear on that. Our chief of police was in there assessing today. We take public safety very seriously. We met with businesses and residents today.
"We don't have to sacrifice public safety for First Amendment rights. Both can exist, and we'll make sure that both exist in Seattle."
Both in her interview with Cuomo and at a news conference earlier in the day, Durkan made it clear she sides with the protesters. "There is no threat now to the public," she told Cuomo.
“Remember why we're here. You know, we're here because the nation saw Mr. Floyd murdered. And that lit a match across this country.
“And we have to acknowledge and know that we have a system that is built on systemic racism, and we have to dismantle that system piece by piece. We have to empower the black community and communities of color. And we have to invest in their health and their safety and their education and opportunity.”
Durkan said President Donald Trump "shows a complete lack of understanding of why people are in the street. They're fighting a system of domination, and he doesn't understand that. And his response is always one that is bellicose and militaristic."
She was responding to Trump's tweets on Thursday, including;
-- Domestic Terrorists have taken over Seattle, run by Radical Left Democrats, of course. LAW & ORDER!
-- Radical Left Governor @JayInslee and the Mayor of Seattle are being taunted and played at a level that our great Country has never seen before. Take back your city NOW. If you don’t do it, I will. This is not a game. These ugly Anarchists must be stopped IMMEDIATELY. MOVE FAST!
On Friday, Trump responded to Durkan's 'summer of love" comment:
-- Seattle Mayor says, about the anarchists takeover of her city, “it is a Summer of Love”. These Liberal Dems don’t have a clue. The terrorists burn and pillage our cities, and they think it is just wonderful, even the death. Must end this Seattle takeover now!