President Trump on Monday threatened to deploy federal troops if state and city leaders do not act to quell acts of violence and looting amid protests over the killing of George Floyd. After federal authorities used rubber bullets, stun grenades and tear gas to clear peaceful protesters from around the White House, Trump walked across Lafayette Square to St. John’s Church and posed for photos while holding up a Bible.

The president’s vow came as protesters intensified their demonstrations in Washington and other cities such as New York, St. Louis and Chicago, leading to more looting and incidents between police and the public. The response unfolded hours after George Floyd’s death was ruled a homicide by Minnesota’s Hennepin County medical examiner.

Here are some significant developments:

  • The Right Rev. Mariann Budde, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, said she learned of Trump’s visit to St. John’s by watching it on the news. “I am outraged,” she said. “I don’t want President Trump speaking for St. John’s.”
  • Congressional Democrats denounced Trump’s threat to deploy the military domestically as the behavior of a would-be authoritarian leader. The denunciation was echoed by both the American Civil Liberties Union and CNN anchor Anderson Cooper, who condemned the president’s pledge as “a failure of presidential leadership.”
  • Los Angeles Police Chief Michel R. Moore walked back comments he made Monday regarding how those who have participated in looting and vandalism amid recent protests bear just as much responsibility for George Floyd’s death as the police officers who had the man in custody.
  • The Federal Bureau of Prisons has instituted a “temporary national lockdown” in response to the protests raging across the United States, putting further limitations on inmate movements behind bars, a spokeswoman said.
  • A black sedan sped through an intersection in the Bronx early Tuesday and slammed into a New York City police officer standing in the road, leaving him with serious injuries, authorities said. In Buffalo, two police officers were hit by a car during a violent confrontation between authorities and protesters outside a police station on Monday night.

The push to tear-gas protesters before Trump’s photo op at historic church

President Trump began mulling a visit to St. John’s Episcopal Church on Monday morning, after spending the night devouring cable news coverage of protests across the country, including in front of the White House.

The historic church had been damaged by fire, and Trump was eager to show the nation’s capital — and especially his own downtown swath of it — was under control.

There was just one problem: the throngs of protesters, who on Monday had again assembled peacefully in Lafayette Square across from the White House to protest the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died in police custody in Minneapolis.

Black journalists are carrying unique burdens during period of civil unrest

For black journalists, the civil unrest in cities across America isn’t just a big story. It’s personal.

This was underscored for Branden Hunter in Detroit Saturday night. A rifle-toting police officer walked up to a group of reporters covering a chaotic night of demonstrations. As they all yelled “press” and held up their credentials, he made a beeline to one in particular. It was Hunter — one of the few black news reporters at the Detroit Free Press and the only one on that sidewalk — who drew the officer’s attention, though he also showed his press badge. “He’s with us!” a white colleague shouted, panic in her voice. Only then did the officer walk away.

“I’ve always had a hard time fitting in,” Hunter, 30, said in an interview Monday. “We know this field is dominated by white men. … For people to actually believe you’re a journalist — even cops last night were saying, ‘You’re not media.’”

‘This is how nations collapse’: Tucker Carlson slams Trump’s response to protests

Fox News host Tucker Carlson laid into President Trump’s response to the protests sweeping the nation on Monday evening, claiming that the president was abandoning the country and only thinking of himself by not acting to more decisively crack down on the unrest.

After opening by attacking a number of prominent conservative leaders, including Nikki Haley and Vice President Pence, for their responses to violent clashes over the weekend, the prime-time commentator turned his attention to Trump.

“When the mobs came, they abandoned us,” Carlson, often a fervent defender of Trump, said to open his show. “The nation went up in flames this weekend. No one in charge stood up to save America … This is how nations collapse.”

One Fox News reporter, Leland Vittert, had been attacked by protesters at Lafayette Square in Washington, just steps from the White House, and Carlson played footage of the incident.

But the following day, the host of “Tucker Carlson Tonight” said, Trump failed to acknowledge the attack while mentioning that he and his family were safe.

“How can you protect my family? How are you going to protect the country? How hard are you trying?” Carlson asked.

To close his tirade, Carlson invoked a different ruler best known for failing to do anything as his nation burned. The infamous Roman emperor Nero, he said, is best remembered for abandoning his “nation in a time of crisis.”

‘Cowardly, weak, and dangerous’: Pelosi, Schumer condemn Trump for tear-gassing of protesters outside White House

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) in a joint statement Monday night condemned the actions taken by federal authorities to disperse protesters who had gathered for a peaceful demonstration outside the White House earlier that evening.

The Democratic leaders accused President Trump of being responsible for the clash, citing his decision to leave the White House and walk to a nearby church where he was photographed holding a Bible.

“Tear-gassing peaceful protesters without provocation just so that the President could pose for photos outside a church dishonors every value that faith teaches us,” Pelosi and Schumer said. “We call upon the President, law enforcement and all entrusted with responsibility to respect the dignity and rights of all Americans.”

In videos, federal law enforcement officers could be seen rushing at protesters with shields and batons while rubber bullets, flash-bang devices and tear gas were fired into the large crowd.

“At this challenging time, our nation needs real leadership,” Pelosi and Schumer said. “The President’s continued fanning of the flames of discord, bigotry and violence is cowardly, weak and dangerous.”