White House: Deploying Federal Troops to Seattle a ‘Last Resort Backstop’

Demonstrators clash with law enforcement near the Seattle Police Departments East Precinct shortly after midnight on June 8, 2020 in Seattle, Washington. Earlier in the evening, a suspect drove into the crowd of protesters and shot one person, which happened after a day of peaceful protests across the city. Later, …
David Ryder/Getty Images

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany told Fox News at the White House Thursday that President Donald Trump would send federal troops to free parts of Seattle only as a “last resort.”

A group of radical protesters seized six blocks of the city of Seattle, including Capitol Hill and a police precinct.

Speaking on Fox News at the White House on Thursday, McEnany said that President Trump preferred local leaders doing their job to defend their streets according to the Constitution.

“The president’s message is that he will secure the streets in this country,” she said.

She recalled that Trump successfully brought in troops to quell protests and riots in Washington, DC, and pressured Minnesota officials to send the National Guard into Minneapolis to do the same.

McEnany said the military continued to be “an absolute last resort backstop” for the president should Seattle officials fail.

“He’s emphasizing that tool is always at his disposal, that security is number one,” she said.

McEnany also vowed the president will continue fighting violent leftist groups such as ANTIFA.

“ANTIFA will be stopped under the leadership of President Trump from wreaking havoc and burning down buildings and injuring 750 law enforcement officers and destroying 150 federal buildings,” she said.

On Wednesday night, the president urged Gov. Jay Inslee to act immediately to end the occupation.

“Radical Left Governor Jay Inslee and the Mayor of Seattle are being taunted and played at a level that our great Country has never seen before,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Take back your city NOW.”

On Thursday morning, the president wrote on Twitter that Washington Inslee was “a fool” for refusing to act:

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