Congressional Progressive Caucus Leaders Announce Forthcoming Legislation to Amend the Insurrection Act of 1807
June 4, 2020
Washington, D.C. — Today, the leaders of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, CPC Whip Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (MN-05), along with CPC Co-Chairs Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (WA-07) and Congressman Mark Pocan (WI-02), announced forthcoming legislation to reform the Insurrection Act and prevent the deployment of the U.S. military into American cities.
“In the coming days, we will be introducing legislation to prohibit the unilateral deployment of U.S. military personnel into American cities without the explicit approval of Congress,” said Representatives Omar, Jayapal, and Pocan. “Time and again, President Trump has governed as an authoritarian — abusing his power at the expense of the American people and our democracy. Now, he’s threatening to weaponize the U.S. military against its own citizens.”
“Even President Trump’s own Secretary of Defense, Mark Esper, opposes deploying troops to silence the protests,” added Representatives Omar, Jayapal, and Pocan. “The American public has a constitutionally-protected right to free speech. Deploying the military in an attempt to quash these protests would be an attack on our constitution, our democracy, and our people. Congress must send an unequivocal message that this grotesque abuse of power will be stopped.”
The Insurrection Act of 1807 allows the President of the United States, in rare circumstances, to unilaterally deploy the National Guard and armed forces against the will of a state government. The proposed legislation, which will be introduced in the coming days, would amend the law to require congressional approval prior to the deployment of U.S. troops.