Why are there almost 7,000 National Guard troops from six states coming to Washington, D.C.? We don’t know, but they are there now.
By the end of the weekend, there will be 6,200 National Guard troops from six states and the District of Columbia deployed in the National Capitol Region, Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said in a Thursday press conference. The personnel will be on duty for “no less than the next 30 days,” said McCarthy.
“The entire D.C. National Guard has been mobilized,” said McCarthy, appointed by President Donald Trump. “We have also received support from [the] states of Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, and New York.”
“We could get as many Metropolitan Police officers out into the streets [as possible] so that in the event that if this was to recur…[MPD Chief Robert Contee III] would have as much flexibility with his police force as possible,” said McCarthy. “And we could take over the static security positions.”
The troops will remain on the ground “through the inauguration,” said D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser.
A source with first-hand knowledge of the situation told Military Times that at least some D.C. and Maryland Guard troops were receiving 31-day Title 32 orders, which allow the troops to enjoy full benefits such as health insurance and housing allowance. The source requested anonymity because of not being authorized to speak with media. During a Thursday evening teleconference, McCarthy confirmed that all 6,200 troops are “on a minimum of a 30-day deployment” on Title 32 orders.
Asked by a reporter “why there were no troops or any other backup security [at the Capitol] yesterday,” McCarthy said that the Capitol Police had not requested assistance from the National Guard, a prerequisite to the deployment of Guard troops.
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