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Banks quoted in USA Today article on use of the Insurrection Act

January 13, 2021

USA Today

William C. Banks

William C. Banks

The Insurrection Act allows the president to dispatch the military or federalize the National Guard in states that are unable to put down an insurrection or are defying federal law. If Trump were plotting to invoke the act in some effort to prevent the transition of power to Biden, he'd have to declare it, as part of the provision in the act requiring essentially a public cease and desist order for the insurrectionists, says Professor Emeritus William C. Banks. "He couldn't do this surreptitiously. He would have to make a public proclamation and that would expose his objectives and partisan rationale," he says. Furthermore, it's unlikely that active-duty military would follow through with the order in such a case where there isn't violence or insurrection, Banks says. Read more in the USA Today article, "What is the Insurrection Act and how could Trump use it? Here's what to know." 

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