DONALD Trump’s top National Security officials are reportedly considering quitting after the President is said to have resisted deploying the National Guard to Capitol Hill during Wednesday’s deadly riots.
National Guard troops clear a street from rioters outside the Capitol building on January 6, 2021 in Washington, DC.Credit: AFP or licensors
Mike Pence is under pressure to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office.Credit: Handout – Getty
Donald Trump speaks during a retreat with Republican lawmakers at Camp David in Thurmont, Maryland, January 6, 2018.Credit: AFP – Getty
The revelation raises questions about who was acting as commander in chief on one of America’s darkest days, which saw the country’s legislature under siege for the first time since the British attacked and burned the building in 1814.
In a statement, Acting Defense Secretary Chris Miller said that he and Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, spoke with Vice President Mike Pence, Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other federal officials to activate the National Guard.
“Chairman Milley and I just spoke separately with the Vice President and with Speaker Pelosi, Leader McConnell, Senator Schumer and Representative Hoyer about the situation at the U.S. Capitol. We have fully activated the D.C. National Guard to assist federal and local law enforcement as they work to peacefully address the situation,” he 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.”
The National Guard was reportedly not fully activated until hours after a violent mob descended on the capitol and stormed the building.
All 1,100 members of the Guard group were ultimately deployed to DC in response to the riots, which has so far left at least four people dead.
Members of the National Guard and the Washington D.C. police keep a small group of demonstrators away from the U.S. Capitol on January 06, 2021 in Washington, DC.Credit: Getty Images – Getty
A pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol earlier, breaking windows and clashing with police officers. Credit: Getty Images – Getty
Pence’s press secretary Devin O’Malley said on Twitter the vice president was in “regular contact” with the Department of Justice and the U.S. Capitol Police, though he did not elaborate on Pence’s role in the effort to secure the Capitol complex.
The White House did not respond to a request for comment.
In a statement Wednesday evening, chief Pentagon spokesperson Jonathan Hoffman said that earlier in the week, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser “requested approximately 340 D.C. National Guardsmen to assist DC police in preparation for possible protests today.”
“That request was approved,” he said.
“Today, the mayor requested the full activation of the D.C. Guard to support local and federal law enforcement as they respond to the situation at the Capitol. That request was approved. There have been no other requests from the D.C. government.”
Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy acknowledged there was a “little bit of confusion” with regard to the additional request, according to reports.
“But as we worked through it, we ultimately made the determination about a half hour later to mobilize the entire DC National Guard. So, this has been incredibly fluid. But I have to go through the Secretary of Defense ultimately to get the final approval to mobilize personnel as well as to conduct operations in cooperation, in coordination with local authorities,” he said.
U.S. National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien speaks during the turnover ceremony of defense articles, at the Department of Foreign Affairs in Pasay City, Metro Manila, Philippines, November 23, 2020.Credit: Reuters
Several of President Donald Trump’s top aides are reportedly considering resigning in the wake of his response to a pro-Trump mob breaching the US Capitol, according to CNN.
Trump’s national security adviser Robert O’Brien, deputy national security adviser Matt Pottinger and deputy chief of staff Chris Liddell are all considering resigning, according to the sources.
Pottinger’s resignation appears to be imminent, while others could sleep on it, the outlet reports.