The Pentagon says about 1,100 D.C. National Guard members are being mobilized to help support law enforcement as violent supporters of President Donald Trump breached the U.S. Capitol.

Pentagon spokesperson Jonathan Hoffman said Wednesday afternoon that defense leaders have been in contact with the city and congressional leadership.

A defense official said all 1,100 of the D.C. Guard were being activated and sent to the city’s armory. The Guard forces will be used at checkpoints and for other similar duties and could also help in the enforcement of the 6 p.m. curfew being implemented tonight in the city.

The officials said the D.C. request for National Guard was not rejected earlier in the day. Instead, according to officials, the Guard members have a very specific mission that does not include putting military in a law enforcement role at the Capitol. As a result, the Guard must be used to backfill law enforcement outside the Capitol complex, freeing up more law enforcement to respond to the Capitol.

Hoffman said the law enforcement response to the violence will be led by the Justice Department.

Angry supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday in a chaotic protest aimed at thwarting a peaceful transfer of power, forcing lawmakers to be rushed from the building and interrupting challenges to Joe Biden's Electoral College victory.

Trump issued a restrained call for peace well after the melee was underway but did not urge supporters to disperse. Earlier he had egged them on to march to Capitol Hill.

Wednesday's ordinarily mundane procedure of Congress certifying a new president was always going to be extraordinary, with Republican supporters of Trump vowing to protest results of an election that they have baselessly insisted was reversed by fraud. But even the unusual deliberations, which included the Republican vice president and Senate majority leader defying Trump's demands, were quickly overtaken.

In a raucous, out-of-control scene, protesters fought past police and breached the building, shouting and waving Trump and American flags as they marched through the halls. One person was reported shot at the Capitol, according to a person familiar with the situation. That person's condition was unknown.

The protesters abruptly interrupted the congressional proceedings in an eerie scene that featured official warnings directing people to duck under their seats for cover and put on gas masks after tear gas was used in the Capitol Rotunda.

With the crowds showing no signs of abating, Trump tweeted, "Please support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement. They are truly on the side of our Country. Stay peaceful!" Earlier, at his rally, he had urged supporters to march to the Capitol.

Senators were being evacuated. Some House lawmakers tweeted they were sheltering in place in their offices.

Demonstrators fought with Capitol Police and then forced their way into the building, not long after a huge rally near the White House during which Trump egged them on to march to Capitol Hill.

Lawmakers had convened for an extraordinary joint session to confirm the Electoral College results.

Though fellow Republicans were behind the challenge to Biden's 306-232 Electoral College victory, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell sought to lower tensions and argued against it. He warned the country "cannot keep drifting apart into two separate tribes" with "separate facts."

McConnell declared, "The voters, the courts and the states all have spoken."

But other Republicans, including House GOP leaders among Trump's allies were acting out the pleas of supporters at his huge Wednesday rally up Pennsylvania Avenue outside the White House to "fight for Trump."

"We have to fix this," said Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, the GOP whip.

The last-gasp effort is all but certain to fail, defeated by bipartisan majorities in Congress prepared to accept the November results. Biden i s to be inaugurated Jan. 20.

Still, Trump vowed to he would "never concede" and urged the massive crowd to march to the Capitol where hundreds had already gathered under tight security.

"We will never give up," Trump told his noontime rally.

Vice President Mike Pence was closely watched as he stepped onto the dais to preside over the joint session in the House chamber.

Pence has a largely ceremonial role, opening the sealed envelopes from the states after they are carried in mahogany boxes used for the occasion, and reading the results aloud. But he was under growing pressure from Trump to overturn the will of the voters and tip the results in the president's favor, despite having no legal power to affect the outcome.

"Do it Mike, this is a time for extreme courage!" Trump tweeted Wednesday.

But Pence, in a statement shortly before presiding, defied Trump, saying he could not claim "unilateral authority" to reject the electoral votes that make Biden president.

Despite Trump's repeated claims of voter fraud, election officials and his own former attorney general have said there were no problems on a scale that would change the outcome. All the states have certified their results as fair and accurate, by Republican and Democratic officials alike.

Arizona was the first of several states facing objections from the Republicans as Congress took an alphabetical reading of the election results. Then the chaos erupted.

(12) comments

Wolves36

I know what they did was wrong, but this same thing has been going on oll summer long with the riots,burning, and looting and not much media coverage, and if they did comment it was a peaceful protest. I think you had A group of Antifa who started it and Trump supporters took the bait and joined in. And isn't it amazing that once Biden was officially called the winner most all of the protest and riots stopped.

Aim_High

I think the riots stopped once one of them ate some lead.

Aim_High

The antifa thing has been debunked... it's all on video anyways the guy breaking the window is obviously a Trumper and all 52 arrests were Trumpers. The whole facial recognition thing was made up by Trumpers.

Wyatt's Ghost

Antifa is actually an ideal, not an organization. Antifa actually and factually means ANTI-Fascist. Reread your history if you think Fascism is a good old American way... Focus on World War 2. Too bad the world’s only super power has one political party that has been propping up the same fascist thugs that attacked the U.S. Capital with domestic terrorism, sedition, and lawlessness incited by a petulant juvenile delinquent and his tantrum rally over having his backside kicked up around his shoulders in the Presidential Election.

Fremonster

To all our outraged leaders proclaiming "This isn't who we are!!!" I say look around and think again.

Hollowed Ground

One thing we all must do. Do not let the Republicans get away with blaming all this on Trump. Trump is only one man. He has a lot of enablers on the Hill and elsewhere. Do not let them get away with saying they condemn the attack. It is they who brought on the attack. The invited it over and over. Do not let Republicans get away with saying we should blame 'both sides'. This is a Republican show pure and simple. All the nooses, confederate flags, Nazi symbol, they belong to the Republicans. Remember all the yards where you saw Trump signs. This is their show too.

Hollowed Ground

Is there any reason Pence and either the Cabinet or Congress can't produce the declaration required by Amendment 25 in 1 day, and produce the counter declaration to the certain response within an hour after receipt? Congress is already assembled, so is there any reason it could not provide the required followup 2/3 vote within another hour? Any reason, other than the goober traitors would not go along?

Hollowed Ground

My goodness. Look at all those flag wavers in DC. It must be the Fourth of July in January. Break out the apple pie.

Aim_High

"Right Side Broadcasting Network" is claiming the people rioting and assaulting police are "Antifa disguised as MAGA"

These people are seriously stupid.

Hollowed Ground

I would not describe them as 'stupid'. The stupid could not do what they do.

Ril

What a sorry state of affairs. This is the U.S.of A., folks & not a dictator run country. As much smoke trump has blown out his butt, I just don't see how folks can be so gullible. As far as trump goes, there should be legal way to shut him up, and prosecute for inciting a riot, as well as a lot of other things he has done. Like being so cozy with the Russkies & North Korea. Also, they should take away his tweeting privilege. But hay, he will get away with it all.

Aim_High

What a sad sack these conservative "protesters" are... all that "law and order" and "back the blue" was all a big lie. I hope each and every one of these people who went past the barricade are charged accordingly.

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