Officials back Tennessee Guard amidst inauguration loyalty concerns

(Photo taken on Jan. 17, 2021 by U.S. Army Sgt. Arturo Guzman)

WASHINGTON D.C. (WDEF) – More than 700 Tennessee Guardsmen are in D.C. for the inauguration, including troops from Chattanooga.

State officials are signaling their support for Tennessee forces after 12 troops were removed nationally, from security duties for the event because of loyalty issues.

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Ten of them were picked out by an FBI security screening.

Another was flagged by a commander and one was pulled after an anonymous tip.

They all were flagged for questionable behavior, including two making inappropriate comments or texts about President-elect Biden.

A Pentagon spokesperson said they were not taking any chances during this volatile time.

There are around 25,000 National Guard troops providing security for the inauguration.

750 are coming from Tennessee, including members of the 278th Armored Cavalry in Knoxville and the 239th Sustainment Brigade headquartered in Chattanooga.

They are primarily assisting with crowd management and security.

Tennessee’s Adjutant General, Major General Jeff Holmes says “we are an apolitical organization that is responsive to the needs of our Nation in whatever mission is directed by our civilian authorities.”

And he had a more pointed message for those who doubt his troops loyalties.