Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf says he doesn’t think President Trump has the sole authority to send federal troops into Pennsylvania to quell violent protests.
Wolf says he was not on a conference call with the president yesterday when the president told governors they look like fools for not calling in more National Guard troops.
Wolf called the protests “absolutely legitimate.”
As for Trump’s threat to deploy federal troops, Wolf tells the KDKA Radio Morning Show, “It might be that I have to ask for it, I’m not asking for it, I’m not looking for help,” said Wolf.
Wolf rejected a request by the Defense Department to send PA National Guard troops to Washington D.C., saying they are needed in the commonwealth saying, “We’re kind of busy here.”
Wolf says 120 National Guard troops are on standby in Pittsburgh if needed, more in Philadelphia and Harrisburg.
The governor was touring damage in Philadelphia at the time of the president’s call Monday.
On Monday, a largely peaceful protest was disrupted after a splinter group caused the area to become safe on Monday.
In Philadelphia, police fired rubber bullets and tear gas at protesters who stopped traffic on a highway Monday evening.
The crowd also closed a major bridge between Philadelphia and New Jersey suburbs during the evening rush hour. More than two dozen people were arrested.
The Department of Justice announced Tuesday that 1,500 additional National Guard troops from other states are going to Washington D.C. in response to protests in the nation's capital.