Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy has deployed nearly 21,000 National Guard troops to Washington D.C. ahead of Joe Biden’s inauguration ceremony, scheduled for January the 20th. Pentagon officials approved McCarthy’s request for armed Guardsmen to support Capitol Police just after protesters stormed the halls of Congress on January the 10th. In the days leading up to the ceremony, troops will maintain a presence in and around the Capitol to assist with traffic control, security, and crowd management. Barricades and armed soldiers surround the National Mall, the Lincoln Memorial, and other key landmarks as these areas remain closed off to the public.
Law enforcement agencies have set up checkpoints around the city as D.C. officials advise Americans to enjoy the ceremonies from home. Many expected the inauguration ceremonies to be virtual in order to limit the spread of COVID-19. The events of January 10th have given White House officials a reason to believe that increased security measures should be taken to protect those involved in the ceremony from attacks.
Earlier today there were reports that a Virginia man has been arrested at a checkpoint near the capitol grounds, armed with fake inauguration credentials, an unregistered handgun, and over 500 rounds of ammunition.
The U.S. Capitol Police arrested a man at a security checkpoint in Washington after he flashed an "unauthorized" inauguration credential and a search of his truck found an unregistered handgun and more than 500 rounds of ammunition, the authorities said. https://t.co/WdGrhydVOM— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) January 16, 2021
Security measures around the ceremony will be unprecedented. As we approach inauguration day, tensions on Capitol Hill continue to rise.