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Missouri National Guard deployed to DC amid security concerns

  

Members of the Missouri National Guard will be providing assistance next week during the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden in Washington, D.C. 

Gov. Mike Parson authorized the deployment of an undisclosed number of National Guard members to D.C. for up to 30 days Thursday. Members will assist with possible security issues and medical evacuation if needed, according to a spokesperson. 

The move comes a week after protestors stormed the U.S. Capitol in opposition of the presidential vote count. Five people died as a result of the day’s events, including two U.S. Capitol police officers.

Various other states, including Illinois, are also sending National Guard members to D.C.

Security was a topic of discussion in Jefferson City this week as well. Senate Minority Floor Leader John Rizzo addressed concerns during a briefing with reporters Thursday, saying he had gone so far as to remove a pro-Biden sticker from his car for fear of a similar incident occurring in the statehouse.

“I think there will be some conversations about beefing up security and ensuring that we have the resources we need to be safe, as well as the proper alerts in place in case of something similar to what happened in Washington D.C.,” Rizzo said. 

The riot on Capitol Hill was touched on during debate on the Senate floor Thursday morning, with Sens. Karla May and Barbara Washington discussing the chaos before the upper chamber.

“We have led the world in democratic processes and our way of choosing leadership in this country,” May said. “We’ve even helped other countries set up their democracies, but to see this blatant uprising in our own country… The double standard and the hypocrisy are upsetting.”

The Missouri House also approved updated rules Tuesday, including one allowing the sergeant-at-arms to carry a firearm and arrest and apprehend individuals who violate chamber rules. It also mandated he maintain a valid peace officer’s license while employed.

The statehouse has seen an increase in security over the past week, with officers from the Missouri State Highway Patrol and the Department of Natural Resources patrolling the halls. The FBI has issued warnings about possible “armed protests” at every state Capitol ahead of the inauguration.