Idaho National Guard will send hundreds to D.C. ahead of Biden inauguration
Jacob Scholl, Idaho Statesman
Published at | Updated at
BOISE (Idaho Statesman) — Roughly 300 members of the Idaho National Guard will head to Washington, D.C. to help secure the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.
The soldiers and airmen will join the D.C. National Guard and support the U.S. Secret Service, according to a news release from the Guard. In total, there will be an estimated 25,000 Guard members from all states and territories in the capital for the inauguration.
Idaho Gov. Brad Little approved the Guard mission earlier this week, and members will depart from Idaho in the coming days. The roughly 300 Guard members are a steep increase from the original plan to send roughly a dozen members to D.C. for the inauguration.
The increase is a result of last week’s Capitol riot. Hundreds of supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the building on Jan. 6 and temporarily halted the Electoral College vote to confirm Biden as president.
Overall the Idaho Guard will send about 6% of its total force. The Guard members will not include members sent across Idaho to help the state’s coronavirus response, according to the news release.
“The National Guard has participated in every presidential inauguration in our nation’s history,” said Maj. Gen. Michael Garshak, adjutant general of Idaho, in a news release. “It is an honor to be a part of the tradition of ensuring the peaceful and orderly transition of national power; an act that separates us from many other countries across the world.”
This will be the second time in recent months that members of the Idaho Guard have been sent to D.C. In June, about 400 Guard members went to D.C. amid Black Lives Matter protests in response to the killing of George Floyd.