The DC National Guard Has Been “Fully Activated” After Insurrectionists Storm Capitol Building

“Our people are sworn to defend the constitution and our democratic form of government and they will act accordingly.”

Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty

Facts matter: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter. Support our nonprofit reporting. Subscribe to our print magazine.

The National Guard has been fully activated to deal with pro-Trump insurrectionists on Capitol Hill, acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller announced Wednesday afternoon.

“We have fully activated the D.C. National Guard to assist federal and local law enforcement as they work to peacefully address the situation,” Miller said in a statement. “We are prepared to provide additional support as necessary and appropriate as requested by local authorities. Our people are sworn to defend the constitution and our democratic form of government and they will act accordingly.”

As lawmakers met inside the Capitol to certify President-elect Joe Biden’s victory, Trump supporters stormed into the building and forced congressional offices to evacuate. Police used tear gas to subdue the protesters and, inside the House of Representatives chambers, journalists reported hearing shots. 

In his statement, Miller said he and Gen. Mark Milley, the nation’s highest-ranking military officer, spoke to congressional leaders “about the situation at the U.S. Capitol.” The Pentagon was initially criticized for declining a request from Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser to send the National Guard to the Capitol, but by 3:45 p.m., Washington Post journalist Dan Lamothe reported that more than 1,000 Guardsmen would be on duty in DC. 

Earlier on Wednesday, Virginia agreed to send state troopers and members of its own National Guard to DC. More troops could be on the way. A spokesperson for Army secretary Ryan McCarthy said his office was “in close contact with local and federal law enforcement agencies to review potential additional support requirements for the D.C. National Guard.” 

THE END...

of our fiscal year is Thursday, June 30, and we have a much larger fundraising gap than we can easily manage with only days left to go.

Right now is no time to come up short: If you value the hard-hitting, democracy-protecting, justice-advancing journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us keep charging as hard as we possibly can with a much-needed and much-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

THE END...

of our fiscal year is Thursday, June 30, and we have a much larger fundraising gap than we can easily manage with only days left to go.

Right now is no time to come up short: If you value the hard-hitting, democracy-protecting, justice-advancing journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us keep charging as hard as we possibly can with a much-needed and much-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate