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Reality Check: Was It President Trump Or Gov. Walz Who Called In The National Guard To Minneapolis?

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- President Donald Trump says he is running for re-election as the "law and order" candidate.

He claims he sent National Guard troops to Minneapolis to restore order after the death of George Floyd -- but that never happened.

To hear the president tell it, Minnesota did not act quickly enough to stop the violence and destruction in Minneapolis, so he stepped in.

"And we saved it by me enforcing and sending the troops in, the National Guard. I insisted on it. But that was after four days, they should have done it on night number one, instead of having the police run away, give up the precinct," Trump said.

The president tweeted about the Minneapolis unrest 23 times: threatening to take control, to send in the military, and famously tweeting, "when the looting starts, the shooting starts."

He tweeted 15 times about Minnesota's National Guard, now falsely claiming he activated the guard and played a decisive role in "saving" the city.

"After it got out of control for four days, we sent in representatives, commonly known as the National Guard, and it was all put down very quickly," Trump said.

That's not true. President Trump did not "send in" Minnesota's National Guard. Presidents don't have that power -- only governors do. And Gov. Tim Walz did call in the guard.

Here's what really happened:

Early Thursday: After Wednesday night's violence, Walz had already directed hundreds of guard members to assemble.

Thursday, 10:55 a.m.: Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey officially requested troops.

Thursday, 4:04 p.m.: Walz officially activated the guard.

Thursday Night: Within hours, hundreds of troops deployed to Minneapolis.

Thursday, 10 p.m.: Police abandoned the Third Precinct building, and rioters burned it.

Thursday, 10:30 p.m.: President Trump watched the scene unfold on television, and called Gov. Walz, offering to send in military.

Early Friday: Overnight, Gov. Walz ordered troops to re-claim the abandoned precinct.

Friday/Saturday: When violence continued, Walz called up more troops.

For the first time in history, Gov. Walz -- not President Trump -- activated the entire 15,000 member Minnesota National Guard.

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