The progressive mayor of Minneapolis is fearing for his life since receiving an uptick in death threats from left-wing extremists, nearly three years after the unrest over the police-involved death of George Floyd.
Democratic Mayor Jacob Frey and his wife, Sarah Clarke, told the Star Tribune of their woes, recounting the violent messages and vandalism they’ve been victim to over time.
“I think right now is probably the most concerned I’ve ever been about Jacob’s physical safety since he’s been in office,” Clarke said.
“Taking a position against this kind of thing should not be hard,” Frey said. “It should be a prerequisite for entering public service. Part of what we uphold is the institution of democracy. This is an attack on our ability to exercise democracy. On more than one occasion, I’ve known public officials to change their positions out of fear for themselves or their family.”
In February, Frey called attention to three Minneapolis City Council members complaining that activists physically threatened and intimidated them for not voting their way after a meeting, including an instance in which one legislator said she was briefly trapped on an escalator and feared for her safety.
As the Tribune reported at the time, the left-wing activists were angry over the city’s “planned demolition of a vacant building,” citing racial justice and environmental concerns. During the council meeting, they yelled profanities and reached over the dais where the members were seated. They also reportedly “banged on walls and doors outside the offices of Mayor Jacob Frey.”