Trump aides prepared Insurrection Act order against BLM protests: report

Trump aides prepared Insurrection Act order against BLM protests: report
Trump/Shutterstock
Trump/Shutterstock

New information is coming to light about the extraordinary actions that almost happened to crack down on Black Lives Matter protests following the murder of Georgia Floyd by Minneapolis police.

"Responding to interest from President Donald J. Trump, White House aides drafted a proclamation last year to invoke the Insurrection Act in case Mr. Trump moved to take the extraordinary step of deploying active-duty troops in Washington to quell the protests that followed the killing of George Floyd, two senior Trump administration officials said. The aides drafted the proclamation on June 1, 2020, during a heated debate inside the administration over how to respond to the protests," The New York Times reported Friday.

"Mr. Trump, enraged by the demonstrations, had told the attorney general, William P. Barr, the defense secretary, Mark T. Esper, and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of staff, Gen. Mark A. Milley, that he wanted thousands of active-duty troops on the streets of the nation's capital, one of the officials said."

June 1 is the same day that authorities deployed tear gas on activists in Lafayette Square to clear the park for a photo op where Trump held a Bible upside down.

"Mr. Trump was talked out of the plan by the three officials. But a separate group of White House staff members wanted to leave open the option for Mr. Trump to invoke the Insurrection Act to call in the military to patrol the streets of the capital," the newspaper reported. "According to one former senior administration official, Mr. Trump was aware that the document was prepared. He never invoked the act, and in a statement to The New York Times he denied that he had wanted to deploy active-duty troops. 'It's absolutely not true and if it was true, I would have done it,' Mr. Trump said."

Read the full report.

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