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Reps. Michael Waltz (R-Fla.) and Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) feed members of the Delaware National Guard on Wednesday. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call via Getty Images

Shocking images of members of the National Guard sleeping in the Capitol have prompted donations to make them more comfortable, but authorities are asking the public to curb their generosity.

What they’re saying: “While we appreciate the many offers and people who care about our soldiers and airmen, we are not logistically able to accept donations of any kind," a National Guard spokesperson told Axios.

Photographers entering the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday to cover President Trump’s impeachment proceedings were confronted with hundreds of gun-toting, uniformed troops who were sleeping on the floor of the adjacent Capitol Visitors Center.

  • Up to 21,000 troops from Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah and Virginia have been brought in to augment the Washington National Guard.
  • The Guard spokesperson would not specify what additional states would be added to the list as more forces arrived.

The spokesperson said the Visitors Center has been designated as a rest area for the National Guard members when they are on duty but between shifts. Troop members have other sleeping accommodations - mostly in rotation at downtown hotels.

  • "Being present is the first step in ensuring the safety of our citizens and our nation’s capital," the spokesperson told Axios. "Our security personnel work in shifts and rest when they can as others stand watch."
  • “Our soldiers and airmen on the ground are receiving meals at the D.C. Armory when their shifts change. They are also being provided hot meals, or MREs, [meals ready to eat] when they are on duty in the capital region. The well-being of our soldiers and airmen is of paramount importance while we support our district and federal partners.”

Go deeper

In photos: D.C. and U.S. states on alert for pre-inauguration violence

Security has been stepped up in Washington, D.C., and state capitols across the U.S. as authorities brace for potential violence this weekend.

Driving the news: Following the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol by some supporters of President Trump, the FBI has said there could be armed protests in D.C. and in all 50 state capitols in the run-up to President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration Wednesday.

The dark new reality in Congress

National Guard troops keep watch at security fencing. Photo: Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

This is how bad things are for elected officials and others working in a post-insurrection Congress:

  • Rep. Norma Torres (D-Calif.) said she had a panic attack while grocery shopping back home.
  • Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) said police may also have to be at his constituent meetings.
  • Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) told a podcaster he brought a gun to his office on Capitol Hill on Jan. 6 because he anticipated trouble with the proceedings that day.
Ben Geman, author of Generate
48 mins ago - Energy & Environment

The road to COP26 gets slightly easier

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

The bad diplomatic vibes heading into the critical United Nations climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland, might be improving slightly.

Catch up fast: Chinese President Xi Jinping yesterday pledged to end overseas finance for building new coal-fired power plants and boost support for clean energy in developing nations.