Dozens of lawmakers boycott Donald Trump inauguration
Donald Trump can cross a few names off his inauguration guest list.
Over the weekend, the President-elect attacked civil rights hero John Lewis — leading some lawmakers to reconsider their attendance at Trump's swearing-in party.
More than two dozen of Lewis' colleagues in the House of Representatives now say they are boycotting the inauguration.
Barbara Lee was already planning on skipping the event. She's a Democratic Congresswoman from California and member of the Congressional Black Caucus.
Inauguration should be a celebration. But we have nothing to celebrate on Jan 20. Instead of attending, I will be organizing. <a href="https://t.co/P4whhl91ll">pic.twitter.com/P4whhl91ll</a>—@RepBarbaraLee
Here's part of Congresswoman Barbara Lee's conversation with As it Happens guest host Helen Mann.
HELEN MANN: Congresswoman Lee, what are your plans for Inauguration Day?
BARBARA LEE: Well, first, let me just mention that today is Dr. King's birthday. So, we're really honouring and celebrating the life and legacy of Dr. King. Part of what I'm talking about, in terms of celebrating his life and honouring his legacy, is that we have to really recognize and go back to some of what he stood for in terms of not only being a dreamer and a visionary, but an agent of change. In his speech, when he talked about Vietnam at Riverside Church in 1967, he said, "The time comes when silence is betrayal." And with regard to the inauguration, I recognize and respect the transfer of power — the fact that President-elect Donald Trump will be sworn in as president. And I don't intend to be part of a celebration of the new administration based on the divisiveness of what the new administration is, at least, proposing and presenting to the public.
Congressman John Lewis should spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart (not to......—@realDonaldTrump
mention crime infested) rather than falsely complaining about the election results. All talk, talk, talk - no action or results. Sad!—@realDonaldTrump
HM: Did you intend to go to the inauguration before this dispute between Congressman Lewis and the tweet from Donald Trump that suggested that Congressman Lewis was all "talk, talk, talk"?
HM: We have this pattern that has emerged already . . . where when anybody criticises Donald Trump, he responds with an attack on Twitter. Is this a preview of what the next four years might look like?
We already know Donald Trump lashes out when his ego is bruised, but attacking <a href="https://twitter.com/repjohnlewis">@repjohnlewis</a> during MLK memorial weekend is a new low.—@RepBarbaraLee
BL: Based on just what his history has been, it's hard to see him changing. I would hope that he becomes more presidential in his behaviour, but that remains to be seen.
HM: Are you willing to work with President Trump in any way?
BL: I've always wanted to bring people together. I come from a district that's a progressive district that's historically worked with everyone, all sides of the political spectrum. I believe it's very important for the president to lead and trying to bring the country together. I certainly will be one to help with that because we need a unified country.