Gov. Phil Scott speaks last week about a bill to defy President Donald Trump’s immigration order as Attorney General T.J. Donovan and others listen.
Following a report that President Donald Trump has considered deploying the National Guard to detain undocumented immigrants, Gov. Phil Scott told reporters Friday that, in Vermont, he would "be resistant to use military force to deport."
The Associated Press reported earlier Friday that a draft proposal from the administration asked governors in 11 states — not including Vermont — to deploy Guard members for this purpose. The Trump administration declined to comment before the story's publication, but White House press secretary Sean Spicer later called the AP report "100 percent not true."
Asked during his weekly press conference how he'd respond if Vermont were added to the list of states, Scott responded with characteristic caution.
"I would seek advice from general counsel as well as the attorney general," he said.
In response to further questioning from reporters, the Republican governor said he would be "resistant" to the proposal. "Well, I don’t want us to become militant," he said, adding, "We need, actually, more citizens in Vermont."
In his responses Friday, the governor stopped short of definitively stating that he would defy any attempt to deploy the Vermont National Guard for immigration enforcement purposes.
Asked for comment on the AP report, a Vermont National Guard spokesperson, Captain Dyana Allen, provided a statement from the National Guard Bureau.
"The National Guard Bureau is aware of the reports in the media regarding a proposal to activate 100,000 troops to support immigration missions," the statement said. "However, we have received no official notification to execute any activations at this time."