Missouri's lieutenant governor demanded answers Tuesday morning after violence exploded overnight in Ferguson, Mo. following a grand jury decision not to indict a police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black teenager in August.
Appearing on Fox News Channel's "America's Newsroom," Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder took aim at Missouri's chief executive: "If you are going to have the National Guard deployed and a state of emergency declared and then hold them back, I say the governor owes the people of Missouri a lot of explanations."
Hours before the grand jury decision was announced, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon appealed for calm and pledged authorities were "focused on making sure the necessary resources are at hand to protect lives, protect property and protect free speech."
"It is not enough to stand at a press conference and mouth some lines that were prepared," Kinder said. "You have to actually act."
On Monday, November 17, Nixon signed an executive order activating the Missouri National Guard to "support law enforcement during any period of unrest that might occur following the grand jury's decision concerning the investigation into the death of Michael Brown." But those guardsmen were noticeable absent as rioters burned and looted as many as 25 buildings and vandalized police cars in Ferguson.
"We see the National Guard rolling in this morning... where were they last night? The law-abiding citizens and business owners and taxpayers of Ferguson and the St. Louis region have a right to ask this governor to answer some questions," Kinder said. "Why were they not in there at the first sign of an overturned police car or a smashed police car window with a show of force that would have stopped this?"
Kinder had a question of his own for Gov. Nixon: "Is the reason that the National Guard was not in there because the Obama administration and the Holder Justice Department leaned on you to keep them out? I cannot imagine any other reason why the governor who mobilized the National Guard would not have them in there to stop this."