More than 40 Democrats to boycott Donald Trump’s inauguration over John Lewis attack

Number of absentee lawmakers continues to rise in protest at President-elect's criticism of Congressman John Lewis

Elise Viebeck
Tuesday 17 January 2017 14:28 GMT
House members walk down the East Front of the US Capitol
House members walk down the East Front of the US Capitol (Allison Shelley/Getty)

A growing group of Democratic lawmakers will boycott President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration on Friday as a protest of Trump’s worldview and his criticism of civil rights icon John Lewis, congressman of Georgia.

There are now more than 40 House Democrats - 42, at last count - who have declared that they will not attend the inauguration on Capitol Hill this week. The number rose sharply after Trump tweeted Saturday that Lewis is “all talk, talk, talk” and should “finally focus on the burning and crime infested inner-cities.”

Lewis, who sees Trump’s November 8 win as illegitimate because of Russia’s alleged interference in the election, is best known for leading civil rights protests in the 1960s, including the 1965 march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, in which state troopers brutally attacked the crowd. Lewis will not attend the inauguration, he told NBC News in an interview for Sunday’s Meet The Press.

Here’s a list of some of the other lawmakers who will not attend, starting alphabetically with Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.), whose spokesman confirmed her decision in an email. Bass had asked constituents to vote about the inauguration on Twitter:

Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.):

Rep. Anthony Brown (D-Md.):

Rep. Judy Chu (D-Calif.):

Rep. Katherine M. Clark (D-Mass.):

Rep. Yvette D. Clarke (D-N.Y.):

Rep. William Lacy Clay (D-Mo.):

A spokesman told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that Clay will be “back home in St. Louis speaking to school kids.”

Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.):

Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.):

Rep. Peter A. DeFazio (D-Ore.):

DeFazio typically avoids “pomp and circumstance events in Washington,” he said in a statement to Oregon Public Broadcasting.

Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (D-Calif.):

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.):

Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-N.Y.):

Rep. Dwight Evans (D-Pa.):

Rep. Marcia L. Fudge (D-Ohio):

Rep. Jared Huffman (D-Calif.):

Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.):

Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.):

Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.):

Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.):

“I acknowledge the fact that he is the incoming president, but I’m not in the mood to celebrate that fact,” Lofgren told the Los Angeles Times.

Rep. Jerry McNerney (D-Calif.):

Will not attend, per the Los Angeles Times.

Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.):

Rep. Grace Napolitano (D-Calif.):

Will not attend, per the Los Angeles Times.

Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-Maine):

Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wis.):

Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-Calif.):

Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-Calif.):

“A real president doesn’t attack the press because they ask tough questions,” Ruiz told the Desert Sun. “A real president doesn’t insult and bully celebrities or everyday Americans because they disagree with him.”

Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.):

“I’m just not a big Trump fan,” Schrader told Oregon Public Broadcasting. “He hasn’t proved himself to me at all yet, so I respectfully decline to freeze my ass out there in the cold for this particular ceremony.”

Rep. José E. Serrano (D-N.Y.):

Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.):

“As the House of Representatives is not in session the week of Inauguration, Congressman Smith will spend the District Work Period at home in Washington state meeting with his constituents,” a representative for the congressman said in a statement to Seattle NBC affiliate KING 5 News.

Rep. Darren Soto (D-Fla.):

“I am deeply disappointed with Trump’s attacks against civil rights hero John Lewis and will not be attending the inauguration as a result,” Soto told Orlando ABC affiliate WFTV Channel 9.

Rep. Mark Takano (D-Calif.):

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.):

Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-N.J.):

Rep. Frederica S. Wilson (D-Fla.):

Rep. John Yarmuth (D-Ky.):

“For the last ten weeks, President-elect Trump has continually denigrated the office of the President by using his bully pulpit for insult and ridicule,” Yarmuth said in a statement. “This is not normal. It is an embarrassment to our country and to the office of the presidency, and we must send the message that this behavior is not acceptable from the leader of our nation. Not attending the Inauguration is one way for me to do that.”

The Washington Post

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