‘No quarter for insurrectionists, anarchists, rioters, and looters…’
(Claire Russel, Liberty Headlines) Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., urged President Donald Trump on Monday to invoke the Insurrection Act, a law that would allow the president to deploy active-duty U.S. troops to cities unable to contain the chaos created by ongoing riots.
“What the president can do is say that justice will be done in accordance with law for George Floyd—and we will always respect the right of peaceful protests—but the rioting, the anarchy and the looting ends tonight,” Cotton told Fox News on Monday.
“If local law enforcement is overwhelmed — let’s see how these anarchists respond when the 101st Airborne is on the other side of the street,” Cotton said.
At least 40 cities have had to implement curfews in an effort to curb the riots, and the National Guard has been activated in 15 states, according to CNN. Still, several cities, such as Minneapolis (where Floyd died) and Philadelphia, seem unable to keep the riots in check.
This is where the Insurrection Act comes in, Cotton said.
The law has been used before, when the governor of California requested federal assistance in response to the 1992 riots in Los Angeles. Invoking it would make sure that there is “zero tolerance” for the violent behavior on display across the country, he explained.
And, if necessary, the 10th Mountain, 82nd Airborne, 1st Cav, 3rd Infantry—whatever it takes to restore order. No quarter for insurrectionists, anarchists, rioters, and looters. https://t.co/OnNJmnDrYM
— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) June 1, 2020
A senior Defense Department official told the Washington Post on Saturday that “no one in the department is talking about invoking the Insurrection Act.” However, Trump did say in his address on Monday night that he expects city and state officials to provide an overwhelming show of force in response to the riots.
Law enforcement must “dominate” the protesters, Trump said, and if city and state officials cannot do this on their own, the federal government will deploy the military to do it for them.
“As we speak I am dispatching thousands and thousands of heavily armed soldiers,” he said. “We are putting everybody on warning.”