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White House: Gov. Evers turned down federal assistance in Kenosha

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kenosha riot
Photo courtesy WISN
Unrest in Kenosha.

MADISON (WKOW) -- Gov. Tony Evers turned down an offer of federal help from President Donald Trump to help with violence in Kenosha, according to While House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows.

"We have a National Guard standing by that if the general for the National Guard needs additional help, we're there to do it," Meadows said in an interview on Fox News Tuesday. "But today, that request was denied by the governor."

"The governor informed [President Trump and Meadows] we'd be increasing Wisconsin National Guard support in Kenosha and therefore would not need federal assistance in response to protests but would welcome additional federal support and resources for our state's response to COVID-19," Britt Cudaback, a spokesperson for the governor, said.

On Tuesday, the governor signed an order declaring a state of emergency and deploying 250 National Guard soldiers in response to the unrest.

The violence and destruction are in response to the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha. A viral video shows police shooting Blake multiple times as he tried to get inside a vehicle during an altercation Sunday.

Now, Republican lawmakers are responding to the accusation of Gov. Evers turning down help.

Congressman Bryan Steil tells 27 News Gov. Evers should reconsider federal assistance and called the 250 National Guard members "insufficient."

"People are scared and fearful," said Steil. "I don't think anyone in Kenosha that I've spoken to thinks there was a sufficient number of individuals to maintain public safety here, I hope the Governor thoughtfully reconsiders."

“It is heartbreaking that the violence in Kenosha has now escalated to include the loss of human life. Although it will not guarantee peace, Governor Evers should reconsider his refusal to accept President Trump’s offer to send more personnel to restore order," said Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wisconsin, in a statement.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos replied to a Tweet saying, "I can't fathom how Gov Evers is literally allowing Kenosha to burn because he doesn't want to offend the hard-left protestors."

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Emilee Fannon

Capital Bureau Chief

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