President Trump said Thursday that he would “very quickly” stifle unrest on election night if Democrats organize protests against his potential victory, suggesting he would do so by deploying active-duty troops domestically.
“We’ll put them down very quickly if they do that. We have the right to do that, we have the power to do that if we want,” Trump told Fox News host Jeanine Pirro when asked how he would stop potential riots on election night should he win.
“Look, it’s called insurrection. We just send in and we do it, very easy. I mean, it’s very easy. I’d rather not do that because there’s no reason for it, but if we had to we’d do that and put it down within minutes,” Trump continued.
According to The Hill: “Trump appeared to be referring to the Insurrection Act, an 1807 law that authorizes the commander in chief to deploy U.S. troops domestically to enforce federal or state laws under certain circumstances. The law has been used in rare and extreme cases in U.S. history, and Trump endured backlash when he suggested he could use the provision earlier this year to quell protests following the police killing of George Floyd.”
“During a campaign rally in Manchester, N.H., in late August, Trump decried protesters who surrounded the White House during the Republican National Convention as ‘thugs’ and suggested he was weighing invoking the law to quash protests in various cities,” the outlet noted. “Trump has repeatedly criticized state and local leaders in Portland, Ore., and New York City for not doing enough to stop protests that have grown violent.”
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany subsequently told reporters that Trump does not want to invoke the Insurrection Act but wants “to help these cities where he can.”
Fox & Friends teases Jeanine Pirro's Trump interview on Saturday with a bit where Pirro says hypothetically, "they're gonna threaten riots" on election night. Trump suggests using the Insurrection Act to "put them down very quickly. … Just send in and we do it very easy." pic.twitter.com/deIMpOJcCw
— Bobby Lewis (@revrrlewis) September 11, 2020