BOSTON — Members of the state’s congressional delegation plan to attend President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration subsequent week regardless of issues about violence after final week’s revolt on the U.S. Capitol that left 5 useless.
Authorities are warning that extremist teams and supporters of President Donald Trump, emboldened by final week’s rioting, are planning armed protests at state capitals and in Washington, D.C., within the days main as much as Biden’s inauguration.
The unprecedented threats of violence over the swearing-in of a brand new president have prompted authorities to deploy greater than 20,000 Nationwide Guard troops — together with about 500 from Massachusetts — to Washington to offer safety.
Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Salem, a former U.S. Marine Corps captain who did 4 excursions of responsibility in Iraq, mentioned that regardless of the warnings, he plans to attend the inauguration. He mentioned he is “wanting ahead” to the occasion however can also be involved in regards to the threats.
“It is a really scary state of affairs, not only for lawmakers however for your entire nation,” he mentioned. “However I will go as a result of it is the proper factor to do for our democracy, to honor the transition of energy.”
Whereas lawmakers are allowed to deliver one visitor to the inauguration, Moulton mentioned he determined in opposition to it.
“Primarily based on the intelligence briefings I’ve obtained it might be irresponsible for me to deliver a visitor,” he mentioned.
Neither is Rep. Richard Neal, a Springfield Democrat and chairman of the Home Methods and Means Committee, who can also be attending subsequent week’s inauguration however will not be bringing a visitor, in response to his spokesperson.
Rep. Lori Trahan, D-Westford, mentioned additionally plans to attend the inauguration and might be bringing her 27-year-old stepson, Thomas, regardless of the issues.
Trahan mentioned she believes lawmakers have to “ship a message” to extremists that they will not be intimidated.
“One of many causes we went again into the Capitol final Wednesday night time and continued certifying the electoral votes is to ship a message to the nation that we’re not going to be deterred by home terrorists,” she mentioned. “We now have to start the method of therapeutic the nation after years of divisiveness.”
Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris are anticipated to take their oaths of workplace on Wednesday, Jan. 20, on the West Entrance of the Capitol constructing throughout a scaled-down ceremony.
The Nationwide Mall, which is historically full of well-wishers throughout a presidential inauguration, might be closed to the general public for safety and public well being issues. Previous to the violence on the U.S. Capitol, a lot of the inaugural schedule had already been scaled again as a consequence of issues in regards to the unfold of COVID-19.
In Massachusetts, Gov. Charlie Baker mentioned he’s unaware of any particular threats within the state however has tightened safety across the Statehouse in Boston. He is additionally activated one other 500 Nationwide Guard troops to help state and native regulation enforcement.
“We are going to proceed to watch and observe the knowledge that is on the market, and we might be appropriately ready for something that may occur,” Baker mentioned Tuesday.
At a press convention in Washington, D.C. on Friday, officers vowed to take care of any safety threats that will come up at subsequent week’s inauguration celebrations.
Christian M. Wade covers the Massachusetts Statehouse for North of Boston Media Group’s newspapers and web sites. E mail him at email@example.com.