Protests Planned for President Obama's Visit to Roseburg, Oregon

October 9th 2015

Alex Mierjeski

On Friday, President Obama will visit Roseburg, Oregon, where he is scheduled to meet with families of the victims from last week's Umpqua Community College shooting that left 10 dead, including the gunman.

But the president will also likely meet a crowd of what estimates peg to be at least 2,400 locals, who plan to protest his visit, claiming that Obama will only further politicize the incident and use it as fodder to ramp up gun control legislation, the Oregonian reports.

"My family, my friends, everybody down here is not happy about him coming," Michelle Finn, an Umpqua Community College alumna, told the paper. "He already says he's going to politicize this—he's already going to push his agenda. And if he knew Roseburg and Douglas County, he'd know these are the wrong people to be doing that with."

"He's coming here purely to push his garbage, and we don't want it," Finn told the Associated Press.

Related: Pres. Obama's Reaction To The Oregon Shooting Is Worth Your Praise

Officials in Douglas County—a county characterized by its conservative politics and gun ownership, located in the state's Southwest corner—welcomed Obama's visit.

"Regardless of our differences with the president on policy issues, we await the president's arrival and look forward to his show of support for a community who is grieving and whose heartache is immeasurable—especially the families of those killed," the county commissioners said in a statement this week. They disputed media reports earlier in the week claiming that officials did not in fact want the president to visit.

"Unfortunately, individuals have been claiming to be speaking on behalf of the City of Roseburg," they wrote. "We wish to be clear that Mayor [Larry] Rich, City Council President [Tom] Ryan and the Roseburg City Council welcome the president to Roseburg and will extend him every courtesy."

Plans to protest in Roseburg on Friday come after the president's gun control-focused speech following the Umpqua shooting last week, during which he urged Americans to call for stricter gun laws.

"What's become routine, of course, is the response of those who oppose any kind of common-sense gun legislation," the president said. "Right now, I can imagine the press releases being cranked out: We need more guns, they'll argue. Fewer gun safety laws. Does anybody really believe that?"

On Friday, the White House also announced that Obama is considering executive action on implementing new, more extensive background checks, according to the Washington Post. Those checks would require high-volume gun retailers to get a special license, and to perform background check on buyers.


This is the 15th time Pres. Obama has made a statement on mass shootings during his presidency.

Posted by ATTN: on Thursday, October 1, 2015