LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak responded to President Donald Trump on Monday night, saying the National Guard are "our neighbors, family members, and friends" but are on standby for the protests if needed.
President Donald Trump discussed the federal response to civil unrest Monday following days of protests surrounding the killing of George Floyd.
Trump said he was mobilizing all available national forces "until the violence has been quelled."
- Ending the riots and lawlessness by deploying the National Guard
- Deploying officers to prevent
- Enforcing 7 p.m. curfew in Washington, D.C.
On Monday during a private call with governors, the President continued to blast others for what has unfolded, accusing some states of being weak and arguing that law enforcement needed to "dominate" protestors in order to contain the demonstrations in cities across the country.
"You have to dominate or you'll look like a bunch of jerks, you have to arrest and try people," the President told the governors in a call from the basement White House Situation Room, according to an audio recording of the call obtained by CNN.
At least 23 states and the District of Columbia had already deployed guard troops as of Monday morning, according to a statement from the National Guard. It wasn't clear whether the action would be enough to satisfy the president. Trump took no questions from reporters and did not say how he would decide whether a state's response was sufficient.
The president threatened to invoked the Insurrection Act of 1807, which was last used in 1992 during the Los Angeles Riots.
Mr President, you had the police attack peaceful protestors with tear gas for this photo op.The Bible can’t help you if you don’t open it. https://t.co/KpcD9zGQss— Senator Cortez Masto (@SenCortezMasto) June 2, 2020
Sisolak responded to Trump's comments in a written statement:
The President’s statement today demands that I speak out. I have already denounced violence and destruction of property. I do so again here. But I also want to acknowledge the peaceful protesters whose voices reflect the degree to which many Americans are justifiably frustrated and angry at the senseless murder of George Floyd, the improper use of force, systemic racism, and the rampant injustices Black Americans face. At this critical time, all Americans, especially our leaders, should be sending a message of compassion and taking the time to listen. Unfortunately, the President has once again taken the path of inciting combativeness, stoking racial tensions, and creating division when we need unity more than ever.
When it comes to the role of the Nevada National Guard, I want to be clear to all Nevadans: The Guard are our neighbors, family members, and friends. They help in our time of need – from responding to wildfires, to most recently playing a critical role in our statewide response to the COVID-19 public health crisis by administering, collecting, and processing COVID-19 tests at the significant risk of their own personal health. Similarly, in recent days and at the request of local leaders, two Guard units have been activated and are currently on standby to assist in preserving public safety as well as the ability of individuals to exercise their rights to peacefully demonstrate.
To suggest that the authorities in Nevada— local law enforcement, the National Guard —are unable, have failed, or refuse to secure and protect the residents of the State of Nevada and their rights, privileges, and immunities, is misinformed. As the Commander In Chief of the Nevada National Guard I can state, categorically, that they have done their duty to protect all Nevadans, and will continue to do so.
Police set off tear gas bombs trying to disperse protesters before President Donald Trump was to address the nation.
There was a strong police presence and officers moved to get the protesters away from Lafayette Park, across from the White House.
About 1,000 demonstrators had gathered to protest the death of George Floyd in Minnesota.
The Associated Press and CNN contributed to this report.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.