News World Trump in two-minute visit to honour Martin Luther King
Updated:

Trump in two-minute visit to honour Martin Luther King

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence visit the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial. Photo: Getty
Share
Tweet Share Reddit Pin Email

US President Donald Trump has paid a brief visit to the Martin Luther King Jr memorial in Washington on the holiday honouring the civil rights leader.

Mr Trump was joined by Vice President Mike Pence on a frigid and windy day.

The two laid a wreath at the foot of the memorial on the National Mall in Washington, then held a brief moment of silence on Monday (US time).

In a tweet later, the President called the visit a “great honour”.

As he departed, Mr Trump said it was a “great day” and a “beautiful day,” but did not respond to questions about the partial US government shutdown, now in its 31st day.

The visit lasted less than two minutes.

Mr Trump tweeted earlier: “Today we celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for standing up for the self-evident truth Americans hold so dear, that no matter what the color of our skin or the place of our birth, we are all created equal by God.”

The third Monday in January is a national holiday to mark Dr King’s life and achievements.

A day before, Lady Gaga slammed Mr Pence and his wife Karen over her teaching position at a school which refuses admission to LGBT+ students.

“To Mike Pence, who thinks it’s acceptable that his wife works at a school that bans LGBTQ: you’re wrong,” Gaga said at her Las Vegas residency show.

“You say we should not discriminate against Christianity. You are the worst representation of what it means to be a Christian.”

Mr Trump had also been criticised earlier in the day by Reverend Al Sharpton, who said it was “an insult to the American people” that the White House was not commemorating the holiday with an event.

The previous three presidents typically participated in service projects during the holiday, according to CNN.

Mr Trump’s memorial visit had not been listed on his public schedule and media travelling with him were not informed of his destination until they arrived.

The President courted controversy around Martin Luther King Jr Day last year when he attacked Democratic congressman John Lewis, a civil rights leader who worked with Dr King.