The scope and duration of the deployment to the nation’s capital will be determined by the U.S. Secret Service, the lead federal agency responsible for coordinating, planning and implementing security for the presidential inauguration, according to Stephanie Beougher, Ohio National Guard spokeswoman.
At the inauguration, Ohio guard members will assist with communications and food service.
“Since George Washington’s inauguration in 1789, the National Guard has supported the peaceful transition of power and ensured the safety and well-being of our fellow Americans,” Beougher said.
The FBI warned of possible armed protests in all 50 state capitals and in Washington, beginning late this week and running through Inauguration Day.
The Statehouse was damaged in May when racial justice protests turned violent. More than two dozen windows were damaged.
Ohio Republican Party Chairman Jane Timken discouraged any violent protests.
“The violence and destruction that took place in the halls of the Capitol building last week was simply un-American ... The violence must stop,” Timken said in a statement. “Fundamental to our democracy is the peaceful transition of power. I am urging all Ohioans no matter what side of the aisle you are on — violence is not and is never the answer.”
The Ohio National Guard also warned this week against false rumors circulating on social media that Guard units would be deployed across the U.S. and a nationwide, two-week mandatory quarantine would be announced soon. The false rumors appear to be listed in a letter attributed to the National Guard.
“Please be aware that it is FALSE and FAKE,” the Ohio National Guard said on Twitter.