What to know
- Hundreds of people protest near the White House on Tuesday night as they wait to find out who will be the next president of the United States
- Washington, DC, officials say they welcome peaceful protests and warn of any possible violence.
- Businesses in the city center have set up windows and an “unexpandable” fence surrounds the White House in the event of potential instability
With only a few hours left until the voting ends, demonstrators and supporters of both President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden are gathered in Washington, DC
Crowds began to gather on Tuesday afternoon at the Black Lives Matter Plaza near the White House.
The diverse group of protesters includes Christians praying for peace, dancers and musicians, and supporters of both candidates. Some supporters told News4 they were eager to know the results of the election.
Download our free NBC Washington app for iOS or Android to get the latest local weather and news.
News4̵7;s Cory Smith reported that there was a small brawl on the Black Lives Matter Plaza around 5:15 pm. It seems at least one person has been detained.
All DC police officers will be on duty and on the street in the coming days when the city is worried about the possibility of civil unrest surrounding the election.
“It’s not clear if we can get results even tonight, maybe until the weekend. So, you know, we’re not really sure what will happen,” Sheriff Peter Newsham said on Tuesday afternoon.
“We invite anyone who wants to come down here [to] exercise their right to modify first. We welcome them to come enjoy and we just ask them not to engage in any acts of violence, “Newsham said.
Downtown businesses built their windows and facades, and federal officials stepped up security at the White House.
The crew erected an “unexpandable” fence outside the White House on Monday night.
The DC National Guard received a request from the US Park Police to be on duty this week. That request was then withdrawn or denied and the DC National Guard was requested to refuse now, Sr. spokesman Master Sgt. Said Craig Clapper.
“That could change at any moment,” he said. “Last week, we prepared ourselves, but over the weekend we were told to be disappointed.”
Businesses have spoken out just in case the protests turn out to be violent. Adam Tuss reports.
The DC government did not ask for the National Guard’s resources.
Mayor Muriel Bowser said the police were ready. She said she welcomed peaceful demonstrations and warned against violent protests.
At least six groups have requested permits for the County demonstrations over the next few days, DC officials said.
The mayor said she did not consider a curfew for DC but will do so if necessary.