Pennsylvania prompts 1,000 extra Nationwide Guards forward of Inauguration Day – CBS Pittsburgh

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

HARRISBURG (KDKA / AP) – An additional 1,000 members of the Pennsylvania National Guard have been activated to travel to DC ahead of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.

Governor Tom Wolf announced the additional assistance Friday, bringing the total number of Pennsylvania National Guard’s support operations at the Capitol to approximately 2,000.

With 18,000 members in more than 80 weapons and readiness centers, the state has the second largest national guard in the country.

“As the number of guards from across the country continues to grow in Washington, DC, Pennsylvania is now deploying an additional 1,000 of its guards to ensure the safe and peaceful inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden,” said Governor Wolf in a press release.

“With one of the largest guards in the nation, the Pennsylvania Guard has the trained resources to respond to concurrent missions in our Commonwealth, in our nation, and overseas. I am grateful for their selfless service and for the sacrifices made by the families of our service members and their employers, especially at these unprecedented times in our nation’s history. “

In response to warnings of potentially violent demonstrations, governors across the country are calling out National Guard forces, declaring a state of emergency and closing their capitals to the public before President-elect Joe Biden is inaugurated next week.

Although the details are still unclear, demonstrations are expected in the state capitals starting Sunday, leading up to Biden’s successor to President Donald Trump on Wednesday. State officials hope to avoid the kind of violence that happened on Jan. 6, when a crowd of Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol, leaving a Capitol police officer and four other dead.

The FBI has warned of the potential for violence in all state capitals, saying it is following “an extensive amount of online chatter,” including calls for armed protests.

Governors across the country are sending thousands of National Guard troops to Washington, DC, where the National Mall has been closed to the general public as part of intensive security efforts. More than a dozen governors have called on the Guard to protect their own state capitals and assist local law enforcement officials.

(TM and © Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All rights reserved. Do not publish, broadcast, rewrite, or redistribute this material. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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