Yesterday, President Donald Trump tweeted a widely mocked “Save the Date” message for a big celebration in Washington D.C. The celebration in question? American Independence Day.
HOLD THE DATE! We will be having one of the biggest gatherings in the history of Washington, D.C., on July 4th. It will be called “A Salute To America” and will be held at the Lincoln Memorial. Major fireworks display, entertainment and an address by your favorite President, me!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 24, 2019
The nation’s capital already has a slew of festivities planned for the holiday, just as it does every year. When asked about the president’s tweet, Senator Kamala Harris, a Democratic presidential hopeful, laughed and said: “I think the President needs to realize it’s America’s birthday, not his birthday.”
Rep. Kamala Harris on President Trump's proposed Fourth of July plans: "I think the President needs to realize it's America's birthday, not his birthday." https://t.co/7HydqxAgBO pic.twitter.com/Tk0mjSVtfU
— The Hill (@thehill) February 26, 2019
Harris wasn’t the only Democrat to poke fun at the president’s proposal, which he floated earlier this month during a Cabinet meeting.
Representative G.K. Butterfield (D-N.C.) was also perplexed.
So, who’s gonna tell him? …. https://t.co/W1WovsxC80
— G. K. Butterfield (@GKButterfield) February 24, 2019
As was Representative Eric Swalwell (D-CA), who is also said to be considering a presidential run:
If this goes well, I think we should follow it with a big party in Times Square the night before New Year’s Day. https://t.co/PiiNrcpIml
— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) February 24, 2019
Representative Bobby L. Rush (D-IL) offered a more pointed response, tweeting a “HOLD THE DATE!” of his own, saying Democrats “will do our constitutional duty to protect our system of checks and balances” against the president’s multiple violations of “the Congress’s constitutional authorities.”
HOLD THE DATE! @HouseDemocrats will do our constitutional duty to protect our system of checks and balances, and take action against @realDonaldTrump’s violation of the Congress’s constitutional authorities. The plan is to vote on @JoaquinCastrotx’s resolution this Tuesday. https://t.co/a2NDKjbvG0
— Bobby L. Rush (@RepBobbyRush) February 24, 2019
Senator Brian Schatz (D-HI) was appropriately sarcastic.
This is actually an excellent idea and I think the whole country should get behind a celebration on July 4. https://t.co/zsBylc4ZhR
— Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) February 24, 2019
The White House has not commented on the president’s tweet and it’s unclear how his proposed bash would work with existing events.
Other critics of the president’s announcement, such as CNN political commentator Chris Cillizza, say his proposed event would give the president the opportunity “to weaponize the idea of patriotism.”
“Patriotism, in Trump’s world, is supporting his policies without question,” Cillizza wrote. “Protesting those policies, which, by the way, was how America was formed, is tantamount to rooting against our country.”