Warren calls for pledge of no deployment of federal agents on protesters if Trump refuses to leave office

Warren calls for pledge of no deployment of federal agents on protesters if Trump refuses to leave office
© Greg Nash

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenChris Wallace: Trump struggling with attacks on 'shape-shifter' Harris Markey riffs on JFK quote in new ad touting progressive bona fides Howard Kurtz: Kamala Harris 'getting walk on water coverage' by media after VP pick MORE (D-Mass.) has asked President TrumpDonald John TrumpUSPS warns Pennsylvania mail-in ballots may not be delivered in time to be counted Michael Cohen book accuses Trump of corruption, fraud Trump requests mail-in ballot for Florida congressional primary MORE’s top Cabinet officials to pledge that they will not deploy federal agents to U.S. cities to quell protests, specifically in the event that Trump loses reelection and refuses to leave the office.

“I therefore write to seek your assurances that you will not allow the military or civilian forces under your control to be used by the President to suppress dissent and democracy,” Warren wrote Tuesday in a letter to Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden, Harris launch Trump offensive in first joint appearance Overnight Defense: Trump reportedly considering replacing Esper after election | FBI, Air Force investigating after helicopter shot at in Virginia | Watchdog says UK envoy made inappropriate comments on religion, race, sex Trump eyes replacing Esper after election: reports MORE, Attorney General William Barr, Interior Secretary David Bernhardt and acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad WolfChad WolfFederal agencies seize, dismantle cryptocurrency campaigns of major terrorist organizations Senate Democrats demand answers on migrant child trafficking during pandemic Watch live: Acting DHS chief testifies on deployment of federal agents to protests MORE.

President Trump said in an interview with Fox News Sunday that he’ll “have to see” about accepting the results of the election.

ADVERTISEMENT

“The potential for President Trump to activate domestic forces as his ‘personal militia’ (as former Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge put it) is even more disturbing given his ongoing refusal ‘to reassure the country that he would abide by the voters’ will’ and peacefully leave office if he is voted out – resulting in ‘an unprecedented test of American democracy,’ ” Warren wrote, quoting a Washington Post article.

Warren noted that Trump has threatened to send federal troops to more American cities after doing so in Portland, Seattle and Chicago, "despite clear opposition from governors, mayors, and citizens who are exercising their First Amendment rights in the communities in which these federal personnel have been deployed."

"I urge you not to allow these personnel under your command or supervision to be used in any future domestic actions against people exercising their right to protest," Warren wrote.

Warren’s letter came the same day that Barr testified before the House Judiciary Committee, defending the deployment of federal troops to U.S. cities, saying he had issued the orders to protect federal buildings "under attack" and combat violent crime.

When asked if he would accept the election results, Barr said: “Well, if the results are clear, I would leave office.”