tv Minnesota Gov. Walz Holds News Conference CSPAN June 1, 2020 9:28pm-10:28pm EDT
>> tim walz has extended the curfew in minneapolis for the next two days, following several net of protests and riots in response to the death of george floyd. he also announced the state national guard would begin demobilizing while local law enforcement remains present on the ground. gov. walz: good morning, everyone. good morning, minnesotans. i want to just say how grateful i am, how proud i am of minnesotans. for the second night, we have had the security and the order
on our streets. it has been a very tough week, but to watch how saturday and sunday played out, a thank you to our public servants out there on many different fronts. national guard, state patrol, police department, sheriff's departments, as well as those who are out there making sure we maintained utilities and everything else. also speaking of, watching yesterday, the whole nature of why we do these things is to allow for that peaceful expression. we saw large peaceful protests focusing on the systemic changes that get to the heart of why we are in this situation. and when i say "we," minneapolis, st. paul, the state of minnesota, nationally and as we have seen over the last 24 hours, internationally. a society that does not put equity and inclusion at the center of it is certainly going to eventually come to the places
where we are at. this is a moment of inflection, it is a moment of real change, it is a moment that those folks who are out there demanding this are not going to take a commission or a report. they are going to want fundamental change. and that is what i think -- that's one of the exciting things in the midst of all this. you can feel a sense of optimism coming back. i just want to say, you will hear from some of the things in the updates where we are at. i do not want to paint a picture that this is over. but i do want to make a picture that i think we as minnesotans have regrounded ourselves in the values that we care about. it looks to me like there is a clear delineation between the folks who are rightfully pained and angered, wanting to see change and expressing it in lawful ways, and what we witnessed on several days earlier in the week, those that are bent on wonton destruction of the very communities that are most pained. i think as citizens, as residents of minnesota we can continue to maintain that and this gives us a space now for a
time of unprecedented opportunity to address things that have been around in many cases decades or since the founding or prior to that. so in moving forward and in that light, i want to talk a little bit about the posture we are in in terms of law enforcement on the street. i signed an executive order in consultation and leadership with the mayors of minneapolis and st. paul. we will be extending the curfew for two days, but the times will change. it will go from 10:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m. and one of the reasons in this is, minnesotans have taken charge of this. the only way these things work is what we have seen the last two nights, the vast majority of people abide by this, those that do not are able to address this. i do want to mention something. some of you witnessed this on many of your stations on live tv. there were protestors that stayed out past the curfew. i think in some cases because of the tragic near miss with the truck.
it disrupted some of their schedules. some of them, i think, were very intent on going home and doing that because it was very clear, they were articulating very clearly peaceful right to demonstrate, but they also understood once they got out past that time, the interaction with the police that some of you witnessed, and it was gratifying, i think, to see how citizens approached it and how our law enforcement approached it, the very humanized way, the very orderly way that people were processed and treated and some of the interactions between the two, to understand each other was for me the way i think people expect this to happen. so that curfew will go in place. we will also think about the strategic levels of what we will have. general jensen will be speaking about a transition to our national guard troops back to their homes and their jobs because that's what they are. they take time out of their jobs and many of them will be going back, some of them working as news reporters, some of them
working as camera operators, some of them working as teachers. that will begin to happen. and that will be done, as general jensen will talk about, in a very orderly and organized way. our strategy we need to continue to keep in place. the multiagency command center that is stood up will stay in place because we are managing communications. i think some of you now have witnessed the complexity of something like this. it doesn't look like the movies. you have to get everybody on the same frequencies, you have to have communications to move people. when you see an operation move in unison like you've seen the last few days, with no prior training together, that's a testament to the leadership of all of these different agencies, and that is the mac, they'll continue to operate until the time comes until we transition back out of that. i do think it is worth noting, this week, there will be, at least as we understand right now a significant event with the funeral memorial of george floyd. i believe it is scheduled for thursday.
it will be an important event, both for the city of minneapolis, for minnesota, and for the nation to watch that process of celebrating a life that was taken in front of us, an opportunity for leadership. when i say "leadership" what we are seeing now is where there are voids of leadership at certain levels, you're certainly seeing leaders in communities that have always been there, put their voices forward. so that will be in conjunction of making sure, as we said yesterday, the idea of protecting peaceful protestors. and that brings me to yesterday. you will hear a little more detail on this. the incident with the truck that i think will live for many of us forever. i was watching that on the mndot cameras in the state emergency operations center in live time when it happened, and i was breathless as i watched it because i thought i was going to witness dozens or hundreds killed in the immediate crash. and then my fear was the intentional thought of detonating that truck. as it turned out, and i do not
want to speak ahead of this, but the preliminary with the interviews of the driver was frustrated, they'll talk about how you close in sections and he got ahead of that and while they were exiting people, i'll let them talk about the details of that, but from the driver's perspective, he went around it, saw the crowd, went around the other cars, he did brake is what you see, but i think the amazing thing in this story was, first of all, that no one was hurt. the crowd then responding, in many cases, just i am sure adrenaline and fear and everything else was happening, but the driver noted afterwards, after he was told he didn't kill anybody, he noted that the crowd, the vast majority were protecting him, the protestors were protecting the driver who they had just seen appear to run into the crowd because they realized how dangerous the situation was. and for those of you who are old enough to remember that horrific scene on that los angeles road during the rodney king events where the driver was pulled from the vehicle and severely injured, peaceful protestors in minneapolis and st. paul
protected this person, even after what we saw appeared at the time to be an attempt to kill them. i think that speaks volumes again. and i am just -- i am grateful to be able to tell that because i still am in shock of what i thought we might have to be talking about. i will note that that event did have some disruptive impact on movement of folks last night, but it still worked out, i think, again, an amazing thing of no deaths, no injuries and last night report of one fire that is still under investigation so can't be confirmed it was by this and it was immediately extinguished. so we have got an opportunity here. we have changed the direction of where this has gone. we have opened up incredibly important conversations. yesterday we saw attorney general ellison assume the lead in the case to start with.
many more things that need to be done at this point in time but, minnesota, this is our chance. and i would say this. with that curfew, it is june 1st, we are still in the middle of a pandemic. we are working simultaneously with this. i'll give you a little bit of an update at the end where we will talk about the number of tests we are doing are still up. we tested 22 long-term care facilities. we are planning for massive mobile testing in the cities for folks. i would tell those of you who were out there peacefully protesting, again, if you're starting to get symptoms of covid-19, please isolate. we will have to do some contact tracing, which i have not wrapped my mind around what that would look like in this size, but we want to massively test you, we want to get you in and get the help. we want to get a handle on that. june 1 we are having restaurants open up outside. it is going to be 85° this afternoon. we have got restaurants across the state that are ready to do that. this is a time for community to gather outside, gather outside in the early evening, experience what minnesota has to offer and let's have some of that happen.
let's get some of those things back going again. and with that i'd like to turn it over to commissioner harrington, department of public safety. >> thank you, governor. john harrington, department of public safety. we watched yesterday afternoon as many of you did. two really startling events. we watched about 3:00 in the afternoon as between 5 and 7,000 people came to demonstrate at u.s. bank. we saw moms with their kids, we saw elders from the community, we saw young people all coming together in what was a very large and a very peaceful demonstration at u.s. bank stadium.
governor as it relates to demobilization of the minnesota demobilization of the minnesota national guard and the return of part of the minnesota national guard back to their hometown and back to their armories. this is not an order to return the entire organization back home. any redeployment is coordinated with the mac and approved by the governor. our plan will remain flexible and have a stable tempo that we can accelerate as the security situation improves, delay or even stop if the security situation worsens. with over 7,000 minnesota national guardsmen currently mobilized, i am confident that we can reduce our presence while meeting the needs of the mission tasks received by the mac, the state patrol, and the department of safety. you may see movement begin as early as this afternoon as we take units who are not required
to respond in st. paul or minneapolis and allow them to return home and begin the process of returning back to their normal status as a citizen soldier. rly as this afternoon. as we take units who are not paulred to respond in st. or minneapolis. and allow them to return home and begin the process of returning back to their normal status as a citizen soldier. in addition, i would like to report that last night at 940 8 p.m., in the vicinity of interstate
initial questioning into our national guardsmen indicate that this element responded with verbal and nonverbal signals for the vehicle to stop. the vehicle continued at a high rate of speed. nonlethal methods were engaged on the vehicle to again to have the vehicle stop. the vehicle continued at a high rate of speed. at that time in accordance with the escalation of force, our soldier fired three rounds from his rifle in response to a perceived and legitimate threat to him and the minnesota police officers that he was in direct support of. the vehicle changed course and fled the scene. at this time, no injuries have been reported. we have followed our procedures and reported this event to both the governor's office and the chief of the national guard bureau. as is required by regulation any time a service member discharges their weapon, regardless of reason, we have assigned an investigating officer for this incident. and, finally, this week and specifically this weekend, for sure, the minnesota national guard is seeing the best and the worst of minnesota.
we have seen the devastation of a community and we have seen great citizens coming back out, picking up the pieces with their friends, with their neighbors, and strangers, and we have had a small part of that. we have had the privilege and the honor to be a small part of that. because minneapolis and st. paul are our communities too. we live here, we work here, and the minnesota national guard is here for you. i'll now be followed by colonel langer. >> thanks, general. my name's matt langer, i have the honor and privilege of serving as chief the minnesota state patrol. i'll be brief. last night was kind of the textbook civil disobedience issue that we are training to deal with on a regular basis and i think people saw a very different strategy. frankly, a strategy that law enforcement likes much better than using chemical munitions and some of the actions that we saw last week that were absolutely necessary but not our first choice.
so last night i think people saw a much slower development of a crowd control strategy and a tactic with dispersal warnings and then an encirclement strategy that works in a very careful, methodical, safe, and easier way to take people into custody, most of which tend to want to be taken into custody for their actions, for various reasons. i echo the sentiment and i was proud to see the law enforcement officers, whether it was the troopers, the dnr conservation officers, the sheriff's deputies, the police officers, this is a multihour interaction, and i think what you will see, if you watch the news and see various reports, it warmed my heart to see all of those peace officers interacting with all of those protestors under arrest, communicating, talking, laughing, and being human together. that is exactly what i like to see and what we like to see and what makes us proud. enough was said about the semi on the 35w bridge. i had the same visceral reaction as a traffic safety professional
about what that could have been versus what it was. and one of the things we have said all along, the freeway is just a very dangerous place to be when you're protesting. and, so, there is many places to exercise your first amendment right. we continue to facilitate that along with other law enforcement agencies. the freeway is just not the place to do it. although we try as hard as we can to keep people safe, it is just really really difficult. and yesterday was a shining example of what we said for a long long time about the danger of those events on the freeways. i tend to agree, nothing short of a miracle in terms of the lack of injury involved there , and we are very thankful for that. last but not least, we are prepared, we have our staffing and our resources and as the governor said, the multiagency response is still there. the curfew adjustment has been announced. and oftentimes you hear law enforcement directing, like, 10:00 and the requirement is that you obey the curfew and that's an order, but sometimes you do not hear, what i'd like to say, i'd like to ask people to cooperate with that 10:00 curfew. and maybe that's different, maybe that's not common, but
that's our ask, and i am speaking collectively on behalf of law enforcement. we would like you to cooperate with that. and that's helpful for us. we will be there ready, we are willing, able to deal with what we have to but we know absolutely the vast vast majority of minnesotans and those who live around minneapolis and st. paul are helping and they are trying and we just hope and pray for peaceful, genuine expression of first amendment right and enough with the violence, enough with the property destruction and we look forward to that and that's my ask for the future here is that we get back to who we are in this state, minnesota, and we exercise those rights appropriately and cooperate much better than what we saw last week. with that, i think i'll turn it over to mayor jacob frey. mayor frey: thank you. this has clearly been a crisis unlike any our city or state has ever seen, and i think it is becoming increasingly clear that it is one that demanded a state-supported and guard-sized
response. the governor mentioned just a little bit ago that we have not seen this kind of mobilization since world war ii. and i really do want to thank the governor for the support that we have gotten over the last several days. it has been absolutely essential for the safety and the welfare of the people of minneapolis. i am not going to get too much into the tanker truck as people who have previous spoke already have laid out the facts. but i do want to say that this just terrifying instance also shows a whole lot of bravery. bravery by the protestors that were willing to look out for those around them, bravery by the peaceful protestors who were willing to help the individual driving the truck, our police officers made very quick and clear action to remove protestors from the bridge because we did not know what was on that tanker. w we did not know if it was explosives. we
we did not know the intent of the individual driving. by their willingness to clear people from the bridge, we could very quickly get first responders to the action. there was also an early-morning fire, suspected arson, over in north minneapolis. and it is a reminder that we certainly still have a very long way to go, and although north minneapolis has not been the center of a whole lot of mobilization, some beautiful things are happening there as communities are rallying around one another, they are making sure to provide free food, looking out for your neighbor, and any time a single instance happens over there, i get 35 text messages and calls and i think what that says to me is that north minneapolis is strong and they are well cared for. but we also can't lose sight of the fact that throughout the day, yesterday, yesterday and today, we have seen peaceful protests all around the city. i had the opportunity to visit lake and bloomington as well as the memorial for george floyd on 38th and chicago. and it did provide a sense of therapeutic measure for me to
see people in community loving one another, looking out for their neighbor, celebrating peace, and celebrating a beautiful life that was george floyd, was heart warming even in the most difficult of circumstances. it was heavy. people are obviously sad and angry, but their commitment to seeing change going forward is inspirational. these cannot be half measures. there can be no tokenization. this has to be done well and thoroughly, and i can tell you that i and i know the governor and mayor and others are entirely committed to that. to call this a painful chapter in our city's history is clearly an understatement. the murder of george floyd has
made very clear the systemic racism and issues that need to be confronted in our society, not tomorrow, but right now. so let's retain order. let's keep the peace. but let's keep that sense of urgency and lack of patience going forward because it is needed. those need to be the overriding goals of both tonight and the days ahead. mayor carter. mayor carter: thank you, mayor frey. thank you. many of you know that i have an almost 3-month-old at home. her name is amela, and she was born on march 3. covid-19 crisis already canceled my parenting leave. and, so, i haven't gotten a chance to do the fatherhood leave that i had initially planned on doing. but i look at her every morning, i look at her every day, and i know that she's going to have some questions for all of us. you know, growing up, i think about the conversations i have
had with my grandparents and my parents about those days when martin luther king was assassinated, those moments like freedom summer, those defining moments in our history that we look at our grandparents and our parents and say, this was a really important moment, and we ask them to account to us for where they were and what they did. to the governor's point, we have asked our grandparents about those historic moments, a commission and a task force report is unsatisfactory. the point is every generation i know has those moments that call us to be bigger than our biggest selves. that call us to work, that call us to action, that call us to do something. and in just the way that we have asked our generations to account for those moments, my daughter, our children, all of our children and grandchildren will ask us to account for what we
did right now. how we acted right now. how we answered this moment right now. yesterday in st. paul was a day that i'll look forward to telling them about. yesterday in st. paul, our day was marked by the local business owners who, despite having boarded-up windows and trying to figure out when to get their employees back to work, held supply drives to collect diapers and formula and food and the type of essential supplies that our families need but do not have access to because our grocery stores are closed. yesterday was marked by neighbors showing up on university avenue, in the midway area, and walking our neighborhood, just organizing organically on the internet, to show up and walk down the street with garbage can, a garbage bag, a shovel, and a broom.
and yesterday in st. paul was certainly marked by the thousands and thousands of individuals who came out just like they did in minneapolis, who came out to peacefully march, who came out and gathered at the capitol to say what our focus has been on all of this past week and what our focus must be on going forward, that george floyd should never have died, he should still be alive, he should still be with us today. that the officers responsible for his death must be held accountable and that as we do this short-term work, we must commit ourselves to the long-term work of ensuring that we stop this pattern that has recurred in our community and in our country far too many times for far too long. their work, all of those actions were peaceful, but they were not patient.
all of those actions were peaceful, but they were not quiet. and as we think about how we respond to this moment, as we think about what we will tell our children and grandchildren about how we used this moment, how this moment was different than all of those other moments we have seen over the last ten years, i am confident that it will be because we can say that we restored our peace but that we never restored our quiet, that we never restored our patience, that we didn't satisfy, we didn't satisfy ourselves or settle for waiting patiently for someone else to do this, but that we redoubled our commitment to humanity, we doubled our commitment to life and the value for the lives of all of our community, particularly, and particularly, for those black and brown young men who we have too often seen lose their lives at the hands of law enforcement.
we have shifted, it seems, our approach in minnesota and in the twin cities on the "how." that's that's what's given us the chance to change the law enforcement tactics that we already heard about today. the "how" has shifted. our community has said loud and clear that they are ready to work with us to dismantle all of those systems that cause these incidents to keep recurring and to dismantle all of those systems that make it so difficult to hold someone accountable when they do. it is up to us. i am looking forward to be able to share with my daughters, with our children, with our grandchildren that in this moment we met it with peace, but never again quiet. thank you. >> thank you, mayor. >> thank you, sir. >> minnesotans, be absolutely clear, the mayor's right, we will be defined by how we respond to what happened to george floyd last monday night.
and that work is beginning. it is going to be a long road, but it is one that it is our work, it is the work ahead of us, we have to get after it. with that, questions. tom? >> governor, after hearing you and commissioner harrington, i am still unclear about the truck driver. what do we know about the truck driver? was this accidental? not intentional? can you give us more detail about where that investigation stands? >> john harrington. so we have gone back, we have been working with mndot, with margaret anderson kelliher, the commissioner there, the state patrol, the bca, are all working together on this investigation. what we know thus far is that mndot and the mac and the state patrol had planned to close the freeway at about 8:00 in keeping with the curfew, which was what we were originally set up to do. so we had been working the plan for that closure.
and that takes a bit of time to get that done. at about 4:30, 1630 hours yesterday, as we were monitoring the group over at u.s. bank and we started seeing that movement toward the freeway, we asked now? and mndot said, as quick as we can, we will. they started the process of shutting down entrance ramps and things along those lines. from the traffic cams, we know that the driver of the tanker truck was on the freeway already. he was on 94 already and he turned onto 35 before we got barricades or trucks there to block off his access to 35. we know that he was -- this was his second run of the day. he was running empty. there was no fuel in that tanker truck. and this was his second run back. that this is a route he had taken and he was, from what we understand, he was speeding. so we do have some information that he was speeding. we do have some information that
he saw the crowd and initially, what it looks like, he panicked, and he just kept barreling forward and then he saw what he describes, this is what i am hearing, a young woman on a bike fall down in front of him and he slammed on the brakes. and he slid for a certain period of time until the vehicle stopped. from what we can tell from our interviews, we have not had any information -- and it is still an open investigation -- we do not have any information that makes this seem like this was an intentional act. it wasn't that he went around the barricades to get to the protest. it is not that from where he started he necessarily -- he knew the protest was going on, but it doesn't appear that he was driving to try and intersect the protest at this point. so we have interviewed him. we -- him. we are continuing the investigation.
and that will be the kind -- that process will move on at this point. >> governor, i have a follow-up. i do not know if you're aware of this. house majority leader ryan winkler has since deleted this tweet, but in the immediate aftermath of that truck incident he wrote on twitter, protestors , i know are saying, truck driver drove into a crowd and intentionally ran into them. confederate flags, insignia. protestors stopped the truck and shut down the bridge. we know that is not true. should one of the top leaders in minnesota be tweeting something like that in an already tense and chaotic situation? >> certainly not. it is an example, again, i do not think we should do civic leadership via twitter. i think we have seen these situations happen. it is chaotic for people. there is a lot of emotions. i think that's why it is really important. and i will just say it. we have a void of really positive cohesive messaging and we have seen this with covid and some of the other things and i think it is creating this. so i would encourage everyone out there, no, it is not helpful.
you know, as it turns out in this, and we will see how it goes, that i think somebody did something really stupid, got in a dangerous situation, with people on the highway, feels incredibly lucky that he did not kill someone, and is really lucky that minnesotans showed their better angels and he did not get killed in this after he got pulled off. i thought we were witnessing that again. no, i would encourage everyone, please do not do that. it is not helpful. and i think -- yes, go ahead. >> the national guard pulling back. first of all, general, it feels kind of soon for, i think, a lot of people. and how many national guardsmen, i heard a figure of 4,000 or 5,000? >> yeah, no, esmae's right. this is where communications and messaging matters. there is a lot of folks that anticipate and know, and i
watch, you've got to fill the air space, are kind of commentating and quarterbacking as this goes, and they don't i saw one exactly -- yesterday, somebody -- we had troops down at the armory, and they were warming their engines, a very common thing, and troops are ready to go, and they were just laying on the floor, they got ready to go, that became a political issue that we were not funding the national guard and they needed cots. that's stupid. so i would tell you on this, please know the professionals who know, this is not a switch, and there is no way we will put ourselves in this. when you deploy a unit of national guard, i'll let general jensen talk about this, there are all kinds of structures of support, all kinds of folks who are on the front end, all kind of ways that you can maintain an operation without some of those support elements that aren't directly out there. so i think what general jensen's going to tell you, the forces that you've seen, able to respond, will not change. some of those other things, you're not seeing most of what's happening behind the scenes, that's what's going on, so, general -- >> i did that for 24 years.
>> you did that well, sir. >> i do not like the term "pulling back." what happened here, early on, admittedly, we made mistakes as it related to troops on the ground and even tactics. so we had to get ahead of the curve. and, so, governor walz said, full mobilization of the guard. in order to get ahead of that violence curve. and, so, we brought in over 7,000 guardsmen to meet this. and the governor's absolutely right. some of these are administrative, logistics, food preparers, truck drivers, they were not on the ground inside of st. paul and inside of minneapolis. they were supporting those troops. as well as we were preparing to possibly have to go to other places in minnesota. at this time, remember, the curve of the violence was going up, and we didn't know how far that was going to go up. what we are seeing now is a much more stable position. so the minnesota national guard and law enforcement operations is always the last agency in.
right? we are not primarily a law enforcement agency. we support our law enforcement brothers and sisters. we are never the lead agency. so if we are the last agency in, we should be the first agency out. and that's exactly what the governor's authorized. so what we will see is a very small movement of those units that have been supporting the tactical units on the ground in minneapolis and st. paul. our initial guidance is that our presence that we have had on saturday, sunday and monday, that will be the minimum presence. we have to always be able to have that presence available to public safety and to the mac. and we have seen saturday and sunday night to be very successful as it relates to the techniques and the tactics used. so that's a little bit of background as it relates to the minnesota national guard and the return of some of our citizen soldiers back to their home and their home armories. thank you.
>> on the letter earlier, and i think this could go to a few different people. what do you make of lieutenant's letters that he published, that came out today, who claimed he was coordinating with senator gazelka on national guard deployment and, similarly, given that letter, related follow-up question to that is, how do people have trust in law enforcement given the tone of that letter? >> i have not read it. i can only speak about the lawful orders of the state of minnesota and my authority as governor and the national guard. that's not how this works. that's not how any of this works. and at this point in time i do not think i can comment any further. i do not have any more information on it. >> governor, a call with the president today, there are some reports that he urged you and other governors to use more force to stop the unrest and the disorder. what was your reaction to that? >> yeah.
this has been an ongoing call around covid. and the president came on and gave his assessment of the situation. these are governors from all across the country. and i remind folks, much like maybe washington state or, more importantly, new york, where we were all watching them what happened to them with covid-19, that was us. so governors have been calling me and asking me about this because this hit us first. the president gave his assessment of this. he called on me to speak. one of the things i noted and tried to tell that this action that we are taking, i just want to be very clear, i am incredibly proud of what this group put together. but i will also tell you, i pray to god we never ever have to do this again. i hope that i never see this type of organization put together ever again. and my point to him was, is that it is not -- you know, saying
the world was laughing at the states who aren't taking action, i said no one's laughing here, we are in pain, we are crying. we saw a man lose his life in front of them. and our challenge is that this is about social trust, social compacts and re-establishing faith in the people who are there to serve them. and i just mentioned that. i thanked the president for the support, specifically with secretary esper and chairman of the joint chiefs of staff milley were on with us to help us assess this. and i also shared with the president that a posture of a force on the ground is both unsustainable militarily, it is also unsustainable socially because it is the antithesis of how we live. i expressed that on the call. >> was he urging governors to crack down on these demonstrations? words.n't know the exact i think there is -- you know, they are certainly making a
point. and i think how you articulate that is very important. we have talked about using this police presence and public safety presence to separate the legitimate and visceral pain and problems that we need from the people who are causing problems. and i think without the nuance in that, and i would just say that the nuance to this message is everything, i tried to explain that to them, and i used the experience that i had, i think it is really important, i have been on the phone every minute of every day, especially with local elected officials, mayors, things like that, calling me, if they do not know, they didn't grow up in this, seeing someone in a military uniform on the streets of america, if it is not in a flood or something, is terrifying and it should be in a democracy, in a republic. explaining to them the role of a citizen soldier being out there, and i took my time to tell those other governors, you're going to need your forces on this, you are going to need, and as the general said, we had established
the largest presence ever on friday night and it wasn't enough. and then we went to the next one because this takes time. so i explained to them, while you're doing this side of things, the solution is not going to be with what we built here. this is not the solution to our problem. this is the solution to the short-term violence and then what we do from there. that is what i explained. that was maybe more nuanced than what the message was coming. >> did he call you and the other governors, that's the headlines that came out of us, weak, that he wanted you to dominate? >> i think that's correct. i do not have the tape in front of me. but i think those were the words. i would not quote that on there. and i did, i got engaged in this conversation, as i said, again, there have been helpful conversations with strategic -- and when you think of somebody like the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff and the department of defense, they work
on america's soft power. those two people, the last thing they want to do is put a weapon in someone's hand. they would rather defuse it through diplomacy, through economics, they'd rather defuse it in other ways. those were the conversations. when you hear me talking, saying i was talking to the secretary of defense, with general jensen, and the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, they were talking about the fundamental problems of systemic racism in some of our institutions. it was a hard conversation today. and i want to tell you this, it is much like i think us looking at new york city and covid, the rest of the country looked at us, they just got so spooked, they are wondering, they are calling me, what do we do, what should i do? and i am telling them some of the lessons we have already learned, but nobody's experienced this before. and i just -- this is where i wish again, and it is just my hope, going back to what tom asked about the tweets, we need to be really careful here, and we are in this together. and i'll be the first one that we have seen it here, this type of joint operation is very
stressful for all of us. they are elected officials in their cities. and for me and my responsibility to try and understand where that lapse. >> you had talked about outside agitating groups possibly coming in and causing some of the more destructive stuff going on this week. i think in the absence of more information, at least people in my neighborhood group have their own theories about people driving around, trying to intimidate people, i think people are looking for more information just about what's going on -- >> yeah. >> -- the license plates, there is been talks about flammable things being put around. i think people are just looking for -- mi >> we can maybe get some information. i think this one, there is lessons learned in this. i have talked about this for a week. i think this is a very legitimate question. i think we have got a lot of work to do. this is going to be a focal point for years, decades, of how we look at different things in operations.
i think it is fair to say, certainly, the way when i speak about it, it is speaking for a larger group. i got out over my skis a little bit on this. as i said, i think it was hard for me to fathom that this was coming internally. you cannot have that blind spot. you cannot have that blind spot if that is amongst us and it is here. this is why that sense of vigilance about what led to it, who did some of these things. so i do think there is a lot more investigating to be done on this. i think the data of arrests is one thing. but i think that data set has to be much broader. i think seeing some of the facebook posts and some of that social media things that are happening, we need to get a better understanding of this. of how deep this is. and i say that not to, you know, a conspiracy theory, something really big, we need to actually know who it was and who it is. i do not know, john, if you've got some specifics. >> what i would add to the governor's comments is a couple things. and the social media piece is certainly part of that. we get all kind of tips and information and posts that say this is happening over here, this is happening over here. and then what we have discovered is when we actually send officers or investigators to check that out, it is not happening over there. and it is there is no sign that
that was happening. but for a period of time when we first get those posts and we see those posts, we act on them as if they are real things that are really happening. and, so, then that has a life of its own, well, the cops were sent to north minneapolis to check out reports of this, well, they were sent to north minneapolis, but nobody was there. and there wasn't any posters and there wasn't a group of people -- i was hearing crazy stuff about the klan marching down the street. we have got traffic cams, none of that happened. so at some point we struggle with what is said and what is actually happening and then somewhere in between that you're getting the same social media, you're getting all that. and some of it looks like it is deliberately being planted as disinformation, and that is something.
i do not know how much of the stuff that's on social media are you supposed to believe anyway? i guess is a question for my folks. we tend to deal in evidence. so we are going backwards from there to try and get a sense of what is actual evidence. so stories about, we have seen this, i go back to the chiefs and the sheriffs, i go back to the bca and go, how many cars got towed in that didn't have license plates? i want to know that. because that will tell me whether or not this is actually a thing or if it is just a new creation of the social media world. when i hear there are people that are hiding flammables, i want to know where are the pictures, where are the bottles, where's the evidence, because if you sent me to a place where there is a bunch of flammables and bottles, i as a cop pick them up and i turn them in as evidence, so i should be able to validate those stories, and i
think as we do that, we will have better information for you that confirms or denies the social media posts that we have been working through. >> follow-up. you still believe that the unmarked cars, the flammables is some aspect of this? people are saying a lot of un -license plated cars. >> i have at least two confirmed reports from local law enforcement of cars, no license plates, so i have those two clear episodes, hennepin county and bloomington both have given me actual reports that i could get my hands on that make some sense about that. some of the others i am still working through trying to get reports and get factual data to back it up. >> with the number of arrests made, are you still finding that the majority of the people you are arresting and putting in jail, curfew, whatever, are from minnesota, with a minority of them being from elsewhere? >> that would be accurate, yes. >> follow-up for the governor
and the mayors. today is june 1, and a lot of hair salons and bars allowed to open across the state. many of those are in minneapolis and st. paul are either finding it impossible to open because of what's going on or they do not feel it is right to open. what can you tell them, what kind of help is on the way for them that are now being doubled down on? >> yeah, that is a thing. and i think the conversation, i heard somebody talk about this, the conversation around the unfinished work of the legislature that will convene more than likely here by june 12, that's going to be critically important to talk about that type of thing. i think the one thing is with business owners that now have disability, as it is been throughout the whole covid-19, it doesn't mean you have to open, it means you adjust. what we knew all along is, i think, again, i am not going to encourage someone to go into an unsafe situation, but we are going to try and provide as law enforcement always does, a safe civic environment, if it makes sense for you to open your restaurant, have your salon, we want that happening. but i would say, need to be thoughtful. i think it is probably, again,
i'll let the mayors say this, watching locally what the situation with minneapolis, st. paul, because i think what you'd see is in greater minnesota, i am guessing most of them will open. and try and do what they need to do. so, mayor, if you want to comment. >> we knew starting with covid-19 that we were going to need to help businesses recover in some form from a fiscal standpoint after the economy began to reopen. now, in addition to providing help from a fiscal standpoint, we have got entire corridors in minneapolis where buildings have been destroyed. we need to have help to replace those buildings, to get people back on track, and i know the governor and mayor are committed to helping to provide that necessary support. i mean, it is important to remember that these are communities that have in some parts been burned, both fiscally as well as the buildings themselves. these are barber shops, these are grocery stores, these are mom and pop shops that are going to need substantial assistance
as we get back, and i can say that, you know, we are committed to it you'd >> last question. >> about the national guard again because i am unclear, just the support people are being pulled or will there be national guard troops on the ground in the twin cities tonight? and if you could tell me how many and be specific. because national guard has gotten a lot of attention and a lot of people are very grateful for them. >> no, thank you very much to allow me to be very specific about this. on saturday and sunday, i would say the assessment of the tactics employed by the mac, by the state patrol, by the two police departments were very effective. we were part of that. we were a small part of that. we were a part of that team. that level of effort i have guaranteed to the governor for an unspecified amount of time. he knows what it is. i have laid it out for him. i am not going to lay it out here. but what we had on the ground
last night will be in minneapolis and st. paul, guaranteed. that is what i told the governor. as we begin peeling pieces off of this, that presence will remain through that time that i have given the governor. but the violence didn't continue to accelerate at a very rapid rate you'd -- rate. so what we did is we created capacity that we didn't necessarily need because we started stablizing the security environment in minneapolis and st. paul. so i do not think any citizen of minnesota wants thousands of guardsmen to be sitting in their armory away from their homes, away from their families, away from their employers just waiting for what we believe and what we hope is a downturn on violence. curfew we lower the today? it wasn't because violence increased. that's not why we lowered the curfew, right?
we lowered it because our citizens responded to us, our citizens responded to the pleas of law enforcement and our elected officials over here. i think we would be wasteful if we just left these men and women sitting somewhere hoping that it gets worse so we can use them. that is not fair to them, it is not prudent. and it is not the advice i gave to the governor. and he agreed to that. so thank you. >> and i would just say -- thank you, general. and i would just say, we are not going to live in fear. we are going to live with the future being possibilities. we do not fear the future. we create it here. we know we have got work to do. we will not leave citizens unprotected. now this is where we gather back out, this is where folks make some choices. i will say this, i think we need to watch very carefully around the covid-19 issue, but i think we need to make movements, we are seeing some good flat numbers, i know jan will -- jan malcolm will talk about that. but this is our opportunity. we have got work to do.
we will come back, keep updates today. and grateful. thank you. >> is there going to be a curfew tonight, what about metro transit and interstate? >> that information will come out as well as the freeway situation, so they are clarifying that. thank you, all. [no audio] >> shortly after that news conference, the attorney for george floyd's family announced that an independent autopsy determined that is fix the asian from sustained pressure was to the -- from is fix sustained pressure was to wait for george floyd's death. doctor said there was no other health issue that would cause or contribute to the
death, running counter to a preliminary autopsy report released last week suggesting the combined effects of being restrained, potential intoxicants, and underlying health issues were to blame for his death. you can read more of the story at usa today.com. >> washington journal, every morning taking your calls live only air on the news of the day and we discussed policy issues impacting you. tuesday morning, the maryland senator will discuss the nationwide protests and his call for a civil rights investigation into the incident. then, we talk about the with airus pandemic columbia university medical emergency physician. and a discussion on evangelical voter support for president trump from the freedom coalition founder and chair.
maryland democratic chairman on the response to the coronavirus pandemic. watch tuesday morning. be sure to join the discussion all morning with phone calls, facebook comments and tweets. >> here's a look at live coverage tuesday. 11:30 a.m. eastern on c-span, the governors of colorado, michigan and arkansas testify before congress about the state response to the coronavirus pandemic. that is followed later in the day by a senate finance hearing on the fda drug manufacturing inspection process. on c-span two, the senate is back at 10:00 a.m. eastern to can sitter executive nominations, including brian miller to be special investigator general for oversee recovery to covid-19 really funding. and at 10:00 a.m. on c-span3, a hearing on effort to keep prison
inmates safe during the coronavirus. then, the efficacy of the 1998 digital millennium copyright act which outlines notice and takedown procedures for website hosts. >> c-span has unfiltered coverage of congress, the white house, the supreme court, and public policy event from the presidential policies -- primaries through the impeachment process, and now the federal response to the coronavirus. you can watch all of c-span's public affairs programming on television, online, or listen on our free radio app. be part of the national conversation through our daily washington journal program or our social media feeds. c-span, created by america's table television companies as a public service, and brought to you today by your television
provider. ♪ president trump held a conference call with governors andiscuss the protests riots happening around the u.s. and what states should be doing in response. -- it shouldn't be hard to take care of it. we're going to take care of it. and we've got a number of people here that you'll be seeing. general millie is here, who's head of joint chief of staff, a fighter, a warrior, had a lot of victories and no losses. and he hates to see the way it's being handled in the various states. and i just put him in charge. states and i just put him in charge. the attorney general is here, bill barr, and we will activate bill barr and activate him very strongly. we're strongly -- the secretary of defense is here. we're strongly looking for arrests.