Authorities are expected to ramp up security for President Biden’s first State of the Union as law enforcement agencies prepare in the nation’s capital for a potential truck convoy protest similar to the anti-vax-mandate demonstrations in Canada.
“Law enforcement agencies across the National Capital Region are aware of plans for a series of truck convoys arriving in Washington, DC around the time of the State of the Union,” said US Capitol Police in a statement Friday.
“As with any demonstration, the USCP will facilitate lawful First Amendment activity.
“The USCP is closely coordinating with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies, including DC’s Metropolitan Police Department, the United States Park Police, the United States Secret Service and other allied agencies to include the DC National Guard.”
The capitol police were expected to brief congressional staff on the potential protest on Friday, but would not elaborate on what was discussed, RollCall.com reported.
The District of Columbia’s Metropolitan Police Department said it has also increased available resources, including civil disturbance units.
Hugh Carew, an MPD spokesperson, told RollCall.com the department “is aware of potential First Amendment activities that may take place in the National Capital Region, including Washington, D.C.,” but added it has not yet received a permit application.
In Ottawa, more than 100 “Freedom Convoy” demonstrators were arrested Friday as Canadian police swooped in at gunpoint, smashing truck windows in a bid to quash the three-week blockade in the capital over COVID-19 restrictions. Authorities there were still dealing with smaller standoffs Saturday.