10 U.S.C.
United States Code, 2006 Edition
Subtitle A - General Military Law
Sec. 333 - Major public emergencies; interference with State and Federal law
From the U.S. Government Publishing Office, www.gpo.gov

§333. Major public emergencies; interference with State and Federal law

(a) Use of Armed Forces in Major Public Emergencies.—(1) The President may employ the armed forces, including the National Guard in Federal service, to—

(A) restore public order and enforce the laws of the United States when, as a result of a natural disaster, epidemic, or other serious public health emergency, terrorist attack or incident, or other condition in any State or possession of the United States, the President determines that—

(i) domestic violence has occurred to such an extent that the constituted authorities of the State or possession are incapable of maintaining public order; and

(ii) such violence results in a condition described in paragraph (2); or

(B) suppress, in a State, any insurrection, domestic violence, unlawful combination, or conspiracy if such insurrection, violation, combination, or conspiracy results in a condition described in paragraph (2).

(2) A condition described in this paragraph is a condition that—

(A) so hinders the execution of the laws of a State or possession, as applicable, and of the United States within that State or possession, that any part or class of its people is deprived of a right, privilege, immunity, or protection named in the Constitution and secured by law, and the constituted authorities of that State or possession are unable, fail, or refuse to protect that right, privilege, or immunity, or to give that protection; or

(B) opposes or obstructs the execution of the laws of the United States or impedes the course of justice under those laws.

(3) In any situation covered by paragraph (1)(B), the State shall be considered to have denied the equal protection of the laws secured by the Constitution.

(b) Notice to Congress.—The President shall notify Congress of the determination to exercise the authority in subsection (a)(1)(A) as soon as practicable after the determination and every 14 days thereafter during the duration of the exercise of that authority.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 15; Pub. L. 109–364, div. A, title X, §1076(a)(1), Oct. 17, 2006, 120 Stat. 2404.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
333 50:203. R.S. 5299.

The words “armed forces” are substituted for the words “land or naval forces of the United States”. The word “shall” is substituted for the words “it shall be lawful for * * * and it shall be his duty”.


Act Apr. 20, 1871, ch. 22, §3, 17 Stat. 14.


2006—Pub. L. 109–364 amended section catchline and text generally, substituting provisions authorizing the President to employ the armed forces during a natural disaster or terrorist attack or to suppress an insurrection in a State and requiring notice to Congress during the exercise of such authority for provisions directing the President to suppress certain insurrections and domestic violence in a State.