WASHINGTON D.C. — The annual July 4th celebration in Washington D.C. is tomorrow and President Trump’s “Salute to America,” is drawing up some controversy.
Some critics fear the President is turning a national holiday into a political event, but the real concern might be where funding for the event is coming from.
The National Park Service reported about $2.5 million has been diverted originally intended for park improvements to the President’s event.
The event will include fly-overs from the armed forces, a speech from President Trump and a firework display that will be twice as long as in years past.
President Trump says it’ll be the show of a lifetime.
Taxpayers will pay more for the President’s appearance, military presence and security however, taxpayers will not be spending more for the longer fireworks display nor for the fly-overs. Those will double as training flights.
Senator Josh Hawley today said he applauds the president’s extra effort to make the celebration special.
“This is something the capitol does every year and has for many decades,” Hawley said. “And my understanding is that presidents have been involved in this in the past, so I’m glad the president wants to participate and I’m glad that he wants to celebrate America.”
But some democrats, like Julián Castro, a democratic presidential candidate say it’s a waste of money.
“Instead of addressing something like veteran homelessness,” said Castro. “He’s spending it on boosting his ego and then getting tickets into the hands of wealthy donors for the Republican Party. What a waste of money.”
The activist group, Code Pink, is organizing a demonstration opposing the event. They’ll be flying a large balloon of the President as a baby.
Ozarks First reached out to the National Park Service for a comment on the reallocation of the money, they sent us the statement below:
“The Department of the Interior is committed to providing the American people a fantastic celebration of our nation’s birthday. We are doing so consistent with the Department’s mission and historical practices.”Mike Litterst, National Mall and Memorial Parks Chief of Communications
Ozarks first also reached out to Missouri’s two democratic representatives and haven’t heard back from them yet.