Michigan National Guard
Story by Penny Carroll
Lansing, Mich. – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has approved the deployment of several hundred Michigan National Guard members to Washington, D.C. ahead of President-elect Joseph Biden’s inauguration. This authorization comes in response to a request for assistance from the National Guard Bureau.
“The men and women of the Michigan National Guard continually prove themselves as an invaluable source of compassion and reassurance to their fellow Michiganders, stepping up from their communities to serve this state during some of our most challenging times,” said Whitmer. “Ensuring a peaceful transition of presidential power is essential to our democracy, and I’m proud that these outstanding Michiganders will be lending their professionalism, training, and seasoned experience to ensure the safety and well-being of our fellow Americans in Washington, D.C.”
Men and women from the Michigan National Guard will join National Guard members from numerous other states to augment the District of Columbia National Guard, providing additional security and traffic control in and around the Capitol, National Mall and the White House. Communications, logistical and medical support may also be provided.
As of Jan. 14, there are about 7,000 National Guard members on the ground in the District of Columbia from D.C., Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington state, according to a National Guard Bureau news release.
“The National Guard has been a part of every inauguration since George Washington and it’s an honor to be requested for this mission,” said U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Paul Rogers, adjutant general and director of the Michigan Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. “Our Soldiers and Airmen have the right values, the right training, and the right equipment to serve as a source of reassurance alongside our interagency partners during this important time for our nation.”
The Michigan National Guard is also continuing its aid to the state’s COVID-19 response efforts, supporting food banks, as well as local health care organizations with medical personnel for COVID-19 testing and vaccination teams.
“The Michigan National Guard is approximately 11,000 members strong, so there is every confidence that our men and women will continue to step up in service to Michigan and the nation where we are needed,” said Rogers.