Defense Department Fears 'Inside Attack' On Joe Biden At Inauguration, Report Claims

The Defense Department reportedly has fears of an "insider attack" on Joe Biden at his upcoming inauguration and are now calling on the FBI to vet the 25,000 members of the National Guard who have been called to protect Washington, D.C., following the attack on the U.S. Capitol earlier this month.

The Associated Press reported that officials are undertaking massive efforts to investigate potential threats against Biden in the days before he is set to take the oath of office and move into the White House. Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy told the news outlet that officials are aware that Biden could potentially be in danger, but said they do not have knowledge of any specific threats he might face.

"We're continually going through the process, and taking second, third looks at every one of the individuals assigned to this operation," McCarthy said.

The report noted that the vetting process started when troops began to arrive in the nation's capital following the Capitol attack, when a large group of Trump supporters surrounded the building and broke in, smashing windows and breaking down doors. Trump had implored the crowd to march to the building in a fiery speech in which he reiterated false claims that the election had been stolen from him.

McCarthy told The Associated Press that some U.S. military service members were at the rally, though he did not know how many may have taken part in the siege on the building. A small number of active duty or National Guard members have since been arrested in connection with the assault, the outlet added.

Joe Biden appears at an event.
Getty Images | Chip Somodevilla

Other outlets have noted that extremists could target Trump as well. A report from HuffPost noted that messages shared on online platforms have threatened to harm the president after he made a call for peace following his second impeachment.

"In online havens for MAGA extremists, including Gab, CloutHub, MeWe, Telegram and far-right message boards such as 8kun, the tone toward Trump is shifting," the publication wrote.

"Some have called for his arrest or execution, labelling him a 'traitor' and a 'coward.' Alarmingly, many of those who are irate about Biden's supposed electoral theft are still plotting to forcibly prevent him from taking office — with or without Trump's help."
Trump has said that he will not attend Biden's inauguration, breaking precedent from his recent predecessors. He instead plans to leave the White House on Wednesday morning, departing before Biden is sworn in later that day.