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Maine National Guard sending soldiers to D.C. for inauguration

A member of the National Guard directed incoming traffic at a mobile testing location for COVID-19 in Maine. Members of the state's National Guard are going to assist in Washington for President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration.
A member of the National Guard directed incoming traffic at a mobile testing location for COVID-19 in Maine. Members of the state's National Guard are going to assist in Washington for President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration.Robert F. Bukaty/Associated Press

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — As many as 200 Maine National Guard soldiers are going to assist in the presidential inauguration in Washington, D.C., officials say.

The decision, authorized by Gov. Janet Mills, is in response to the National Guard Bureau’s request for extra help following the breach of the U.S. Capitol by protesters last week and the threat of more demonstrations. Maine is providing 175 to 200 soldiers.

“The National Guard has been supporting inaugural activities since the founding of our country, and Maine is no exception,” said Maj. Gen. Douglas Farnham, Maine’s adjutant general. “We’re proud to join our brothers and sisters from across the country to support the peaceful transition of power and ensure the safety and well-being of our fellow Americans.”

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National Guard personnel from across the country will provide crowd management, traffic control, communications, and logistical and medical support, officials said.