- President Trump announced a major celebration called “A Salute To America,” scheduled for July 4 at the Lincoln Memorial.
- Trump notably left out any mention of a military parade, which he previously enthusiastically promoted.
- A military parade was in the works in 2018, but was reportedly canceled because of financial concerns.
President Donald Trump announced a major July 4 celebration on Twitter Sunday morning, but notably absent from the plan was his long-desired military parade.
The celebration, to be held at the Lincoln Memorial, will be called “A Salute To America,” according to Trump’s tweet, and will include a “Major fireworks display, entertainment, and an address by your favourite President, me [Trump]!”
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
Trump has openly spoken about his desire to hold a major patriotic celebration in the US after he attended France’s Bastille Day military parade in July 2017. “It was one of the greatest parades I’ve ever seen,” Trump told reporters at the United Nations General Assembly, months after witnessing it. Trump reportedly told French president Emmanuel Macron “We’re going to have to try to top it.”
He reportedly wanted a military parade, in particular.
According to The Washington Post, in January 2018, Trump directed military officials to begin planning such a spectacle, reportedly saying in a meeting, “I want a parade like the one in France.” A month later, The White House and Pentagon confirmed that the plans were underway.
The Washington Post reported that sources claimed that President Trump preferred July 4 or Memorial Day for the parade.
CNN reported that an administration official estimated that it would cost $US92 million.
In August 2018, however, the Department of Defence announced that the parade would be postponed until a later date, potentially in 2019.
Trump took to Twitter to blame unspecified local Washington DC politicians for inflating the price, writing, “The local politicians who run Washington, D.C. (poorly) know a windfall when they see it. When asked to give us a price for holding a great celebratory military parade, they wanted a number so ridiculously high that I cancelled it.”
The Lincoln Memorial is under the purvue and administration of the National Park Service, so it would seemingly avoid logistical disputes with local authorities.
Neither the White House nor the National Park Service immediately returned request for comment.
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