Donald Trump Calls National Guard Deployment During Kentucky Protests a 'Positive Thing'

President Donald Trump gave his approval to Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear's announcement that he would be calling out the National Guard in Louisville during Wednesday protests.

Demonstrators are protesting over indictments made in the March shooting death of Breonna Taylor by members of the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department (LMPD). Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron announced Wednesday that one former Louisville officer, Brett Hankinson, was charged with three felony counts of first-degree wanton endangerment. However, no officers were charged in Taylor's shooting.

Trump has endorsed using National Guard units in other cities where protests over racism and police culture have occurred.

"I understand he's called up the National Guard," Trump said of Beshear, "which is a very good thing. That's a very positive thing and it will all work out."

During a Wednesday press conference, Beshear said that the reason for calling out the National Guard "is to make sure that we can keep everybody safe."

"Each of the Guardsmen or women knows what their job is and it's not the forward-facing role that LMPD is playing and has much more experience with," Beshear added. Approximately 500 members of the Kentucky National Guard have been deployed.

"This morning the Governor authorized the deployment of a portion of the Kentucky National Guard to Louisville," Major Stephen Martin, Director of Public Affairs for the Kentucky National Guard, said in a statement sent to Newsweek on Wednesday. "We will be engaged in limited and specific missions, protecting critical infrastructure. Our Guard leadership has been directed to retain command and control at all times while working with the Louisville Metro Police Department."

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President Donald Trump praised Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear's decision to call in the National Guard during protests in Louisville on Wednesday. Joshua Roberts/Getty

President Trump told reporters he would be speaking with Beshear over the telephone "very shortly." Soon after, President Trump left the podium, saying that he had an "emergency phone call" he needed to take.

Members of the Kentucky National Guard were called to Louisville in June to help patrol protests over Taylor's death. During the demonstrations, barbecue restaurant owner David McAtee was shot and killed. Members of the LMPD and the Kentucky National Guard were present when McAtee's shooting occurred. At the time, Governor Beshear's office claimed that McAtee was killed by ammunition fired by the Kentucky National Guard.

On Monday, McAtee's family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against both the LMPD and the Kentucky National Guard. Among the allegations in the lawsuit were assault and battery and excessive use of force. The names of the LMPD and National Guard members involved in McAtee's shooting have not been released.

President Trump has praised the National Guard for quelling violent protests in cities such as Kenosha, Wisconsin. Demonstrations broke out in Kenosha in August after the police shooting of Jacob Blake. Blake survived the shooting but was left paralyzed from the waist down.

"If I didn't INSIST on having the National Guard activate and go into Kenosha, Wisconsin," Trump tweeted in August, "there would be no Kenosha right now."