The rate of emergencies that this year has witnessed across the US has shown the need National Guard. The problems range from COVID-19 pandemic to hurricanes, wildfires and a strong wave of street protests.
The troops are set for any other emergency that is likely to spring up from the wake of the election that started today, Tuesday, 03 November 2020.
Several communities and states in the US are already bracing for the potential protest regardless of the outcome of the election. It is constitutional that in the presence of civil unrest, the Guard not active-duty army should be order to restore order in the domestic soil.
Therefore, if any form of demonstrations by the citizens turn violent and beyond the capacity of the local police, the governors will almost certainly seek for the states’ National Guard to call to order.
Now, the states are at alert for a potential violence based on their previous experience in this particular year across cities in the country.
A day ago, the Governor of Massachusetts, Charlie Baker, call out a thousand of the National Guard to stay on standby against any potential problem in the aftermath of the upcoming election today, Tuesday 03 Nov. 2020.
Now, in Oregon, Governor Kate Brown just declared a state of emergency majorly for the Portland area, she gave explanation for her concern for a potential violence that has been speculated concerning the election.
The Oregon State Police and the Multnomah County sheriff are mandated to be in charge of public safety management within the city, while the National Guards are to position members trained in crowd control to stay on standby.
Brown said, “we know that there are some people who might use peaceful election night protests to promote violence and property destruction”. She added, “that behaviour is not acceptable.”
Similarly, both New Jersey and Wisconsin have called up hundreds of citizen soldiers as well as air force to work towards the elections.
As a form of decoy and to avoid unnecessary panic, in both states, the deployed troops are wearing similar clothes to civilian to avoid alarming voters upon seeing camouflage uniforms at the election polls. Maj. Joe Trovato, a spokesman for the Wisconsin National Guard said, “it creates a sense of normalcy.” He added, “we’re not trying to alarm anyone; we are just trying to support the election.”
According to the legal experts, the election result may likely complicate the response because the president retained the broad discretion to sidestep any form of legal restrictions if he declares an insurrection. The declaration would allow him not only to take over the control of the state National Guard troops, but it will allow him to deploy the Army or Marines or both depending on the intensity of violence.
If Mr. President makes decision to declare insurrection, little will the Congress or the courts will be able to do in an attempt to stop him, legal experts say.
Lastly, a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel, Rachel VanLandingham who now teaches Law said, “the law is so broadly written that the president gets to decide what’s an insurrection, and there is not much local authorities or anyone else can do to stop it.”