President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump will attend the funeral of former President George H.W. Bush, who died Friday night, the White House announced Saturday.
The Trumps were not invited to the National Cathedral funeral of Sen. John McCain, who died earlier this year. The late 41st president had been critical of Trump, once calling him a “blowhard.”
“The President and first lady were notified late last night of President George H.W. Bush’s passing. President Trump is scheduled to speak with President George W. Bush this morning and offer his condolences on behalf of himself, the First Lady, and the entire country,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement.
“A state funeral is being arranged with all of the accompanying support and honors. The President will designate Wednesday, Dec. 5 as a National Day Of Mourning,” she added. “He and the first lady will attend the funeral at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.”
The Trumps hailed Bush in a statement released early Saturday morning.
“Through his essential authenticity, disarming wit, and unwavering commitment to faith, family, and country, President Bush inspired generations of his fellow Americans to public service—to be, in his words, ‘a thousand points of light’ illuminating the greatness, hope, and opportunity of America to the world,” the first couple said.
(However, the sitting president has criticized that Bush program, calling it ineffective and confusing.)
“President Bush always found a way to set the bar higher,” the Trumps said. “With sound judgement, common sense, and unflappable leadership, President Bush guided our Nation, and the world, to a peaceful and victorious conclusion of the Cold War. As President, he set the stage for the decades of prosperity that have followed. And through all that he accomplished, he remained humble, following the quiet call to service that gave him a clear sense of direction.”
As he prepared for the second day of a G-20 summit in Argentina, President Trump also tweeted a tribute to the 41st commander in chief.
President George H.W. Bush led a long, successful and beautiful life. Whenever I was with him I saw his absolute joy for life and true pride in his family. His accomplishments were great from beginning to end. He was a truly wonderful man and will be missed by all!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 1, 2018
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