SPRINGFIELD — Gov. J.B. Pritzker is sending about 200 members of the Illinois National Guard to Washington, D.C., to help with security at next week’s inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.
Pritzker announced Tuesday that the guard members would travel to Washington in advance of Biden’s Jan. 20 inauguration at the U.S. Capitol, which a mob of supporters of President Donald Trump stormed last week to try to overturn the results of the presidential election.
Pritzker says in a statement that, “In the wake of the recent incident at the Capitol, ensuring a peaceful transfer of power to the Biden administration is of the utmost importance.”
The U.S. Capitol has been transformed into a fortress of impeachment. Where visitors once walked, hundreds of National Guard members are camping out throughout the Capitol and even in the Rotunda, protecting lawmakers still reeling from last week’s violence and preparing for the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.
Florida Rep. Brian Mast says, “It’s as sad as anything can make me in this world.”
Along with the signs of fear, there were also signs of gratitude for those protecting the Capitol. A tunnel leading to House office buildings has become a makeshift tribute to members of law enforcement who protected the Capitol during last week’s rioting.