McGeehan to reintroduce Back the Guard Act in 2020

CHARLESTON — With the death of another soldier in the West Virginia National Guard, a member of the West Virginia House of Delegates plans to keep pushing a bill meant to keep guard members out of foreign conflicts.

Del. Pat McGeehan, R-Hancock, said Thursday he plans to reintroduce House Bill 2732, the Defend the Guard Act, when the West Virginia Legislature meets for the 2020 regular session in January.

The Defend the Guard Act would prohibit members of the state National Guard from participating in active combat duty unless an act of war has been passed by Congress or if Congress has specifically called for use of the National Guard within its constitutional powers.

McGeehan, who served as a captain and intelligence officer in the U.S. Air Force, has introduced a version of the act every year for the last five years.

“With this bill, I presented (lawmakers) every opportunity to simply live up to their oath of office,” McGeehan said. “It’s really not that hard, but they refused.”

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