As an outspoken advocate for immigrant rights, Representative Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) stated he will be boycotting the inauguration for President-elect Trump. His protest is due in large part to Trump’s offensive comments and rhetoric pertaining to women and minorities throughout his campaign.
Said Gutierrez of his decision, “I could not look at my wife, my daughters or my grandson in the eye if I sat there and attended as if everything that candidate Donald Trump had said about women, Latinos, African-Americans, Muslims … is OK or erased from my memory.”
Rep. Gutierrez has been especially critical of Trump’s damaging language towards immigrants. His district is nearly 72% Hispanic and he himself is Puerto Rican. He was quoted as saying, “I cannot go to inauguration of a man who’s going to appoint people to the Supreme Court and turn back the clock on women and turn back the clock on immigrants and the safety and freedom that we fought for them.”
But Rep. Gutierrez is not the only one skipping the inaugural celebrations. At last count, an estimated 56 members of the House — representing more than 10% of Congress — will join Gutierrez and Congressman John Lewis in boycotting the event.
Those who have chosen to boycott his inauguration condemn the idea that Trump is fit to hold America’s highest and most-esteemed office. Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) stated, “I value our government. I appreciate it greatly. This president semi-elect does not deserve to be president of the United States. He has not exhibited the characteristics and the values that we hold dear.”
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) went on to say, “The rhetoric and actions of Donald Trump have been so far beyond the pale — so disturbing and disheartening — and his continued failure to address his conflicts of interest, to adequately divest or even to fully disclose his financial dealings, or to sufficiently separate himself from the ethical misconduct that legal experts on both side of the aisle have identified have been so offensive I cannot in good conscience participate in this honored and revered democratic tradition of the peaceful transfer of power.”
Despite the fact that Trump has had trouble securing both performers and spectators for the event — even resorting to Facebook ads in an attempt to drive up attendance — there are still some who plan to attend. And the President-elect’s plans for his inaugural luncheon celebrations should be of surprise to no one.
A menu of lobster and steak (though not of his own house brand) will be served to the nearly 200 guests. And while Trump does not consume alcohol himself, he will of course provide such refreshment for his attendees. At a cocktail party, hosts should plan for two to three glasses per person, but in lieu of mixed drinks, Trump’s invitees will savor wines and champagne made in California. Whether the sweet chocolate soufflé and cherry ice cream will be enough to cancel out the bitter taste left in the mouths of the aforementioned representatives is anyone’s guess.