Capitol Police ask National Guard to stay at the Capitol for 2 more months

National guard US Capitol
Members of the National Guard outside the U.S. Capitol on March 4, 2021. Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images
  • The Capitol Police asked the National Guard to stay at the Capitol for two more months.
  • The AP reported that the Pentagon is reviewing the proposal.
  • The Capitol complex was on high alert Thursday due to potential violence.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

The Capitol Police asked the National Guard to prolong its stay at the Capitol for two more months, the Associated Press reported on Thursday.

National Guard members have been deployed to the Capitol complex for additional security purposes since the deadly insurrection on January 6. About 25,000 members were stationed in the nation’s capital for President Joe Biden’s inauguration on January 20. And around 5,000 members remain at the Capitol.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin previously said the troops are expected to leave the Capitol on March 12. 

The Pentagon is reviewing the proposal from the Capitol Police, AP reported. The Capitol Police press office did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

The request for extended security came as the Capitol complex was on high alert Thursday because of threats of violence in the city.

In a statement, the Capitol Police said on Wednesday that it “obtained intelligence that shows a possible plot to breach the Capitol by an identified militia group on Thursday.”

“We have already made significant security upgrades to include establishing a physical structure and increasing manpower to ensure the protection of Congress, the public and our police officers,” the Capitol Police said.

Authorities have been informed that some followers of the far-right QAnon conspiracy theory believe that former President Donald Trump will be reinstated as president on Thursday, March 4 – the original date that presidents were sworn into office. The 20th Amendment, adopted in 1933, shortened the lame-duck period between the outgoing president and the incoming one to January 20. 

The conspiracy theory is rooted in the belief that Trump won the 2020 presidential election. Federal and state election officials have determined that no widespread voter fraud occurred in the 2020 race.

Believers in the QAnon conspiracy were among the Trump supporters who stormed the Capitol on January 6. The violence left five people, including a Capitol Police officer, dead.

The House wrapped up its business earlier than expected this week due to the possible violence on Thursday.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters on Thursday that security decisions are not up to her, but that the troops should stay at the Capitol “as long as they are needed.”