Tom Cotton addresses Seattle protesters: 'The occupation of critical government buildings cannot be tolerated'

Sen. Tom Cotton said Thursday that mayors and governors should not tolerate the occupation of critical government buildings after protesters calling to defund the police blocked a six-block area in Seattle.

“When you look in Seattle and you see all these far-left activists that have declared some kind of autonomous zones, I guess the Democratic Party has gone back to their roots of secession once again, since it was the Democratic Party that seceded and formed the Confederacy,” the Republican Arkansas lawmaker told "America's Newsroom."

“We want to see a peaceful resolution to this standoff, but this can’t be allowed to continue indefinitely,” Cotton said.

SEATTLE PROTESTERS STORM CITY HALL, DEMAND MAYOR RESIGN AFTER DRIVING POLICE OUT OF AREA, DECLARING AUTONOMOUS ZONE

Seattle police say they have received reports of armed guards and potential extortion in a self-declared autonomous zone that includes a now-closed precinct.

“We’ve heard, anecdotally, reports of citizens and businesses being asked to pay a fee to operate within this area. This is the crime of extortion. If anyone has been subjected to this, we need them to call 911,” Assistant Chief of Police Deanna Nollette said on Wednesday.

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Cotton said that turning off building utilities such as water and electricity may cause the activists to “go home” after a few hours.

“Those kinds of non-violent steps would be appropriate,” Cotton said.

“No government can allow an angry mob to take over its buildings and refuse or prevent the people’s government from doing the people’s business.”

Fox News' Vandana Rambaran contributed to this report.