Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker tonight derided President Donald Trump’s threat to deploy the U.S. military to American cities to quell violent protests, calling the idea “illegal” and “ridiculous.”
In an interview on CNN, the Democrat said, “I reject the notion that the federal government can send troops into the state of Illinois.”
Pritzker spoke briefly after Trump made remarks at the White House about how he’d send federal military forces into states that have not activated their national guards to quell looting, vandalism and violence following the killing of George Floyd.
When asked about Trump’s military mobilization plan, the governor said: “Well, it’s illegal. It’s illegal. He can’t do it. … It’s ridiculous.”
Pritzker also criticized Trump’s handling of back-to-back national crises, which the governor said constituted a “miserable failure.” Pritzker referenced other moments in American history when leaders sought to calm an agitated nation instead of sowing division.
“This president doesn’t understand any of that,” Pritzker said on CNN. “He probably hasn’t read any of that, knows no history and doesn’t understand the job of the president.”