Many Democrats are planning to skip Friday’s inaugural activities over their objections to President-elect Donald Trump, but not Wisconsin Rep. Gwen Moore.
“As a proud Democrat, I want President-elect Trump to see me front and center as he’s sworn in,” Moore said in a statement Wednesday. “I want him to see exactly what his opposition looks like. When he sees me, I want him to see The Resistance.”
Moore said she suspects Trump will use his inaugural address “to bypass Democrats and to push his extreme agenda with utter impunity” and that she refuses to be “a pawn” in that effort by skipping the Inauguration.
“I did not come to this decision lightly,” she said. “I weighed my responsibility as an elected official against my disgust over the president-elect’s vile tactics employed to ascend to the presidency and the disrespectful treatment of revered civil rights icon Congressman John Lewis.”
Trump’s criticism of Lewis is frequently cited as the primary reason by many Democrats who are are skipping the inauguration, with the list of members not attending continuing to grow. Rep.Terri A. Sewell, D-Ala., one of the latest members to announce her decision not to attend, said that while she has respect for the office of the president and accepts the election results, she cannot accept Trump’s disrespect of Lewis.
“The ongoing attacks against Congressman John Lewis are a direct assault on the sacrifices of those brave men and women in my Alabama district who fought, bled and died for the civil rights and voting rights of all Americans. As always, I stand with my constituents,” she said.
Moore, meanwhile, noted she and a majority of her constituents find Trump’s policies “repugnant” but said going to the inauguration allows her to deliver that message and “serve a symbol of opposition, not normalization.”
Speaking of opposition, Republican Reps. Justin Amash and Sean P. Duffyreceived a dose of it during town hall meetings in their districts this week. The topic of frustration was the GOP’s plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
Facing a packed crowd of a few hundred in Michigan, Amash, a member of the House Freedom Caucus, said the burden of replacing the Affordable Care Act would fall to state governments, causing the crowd to erupt in protest. And in Wisconsin, Duffy got an earful from a constituent complaining of Republican inaction when he said that the health care law would be in place until at least 2018 to give Republicans time to come up with a replacement.
The Republicans’ struggles over the Affordable Care Act provide Democrats with an opportunity to seize on those constituents’ frustrations, but the party has yet to decide on its next leader.
Speaking of which: Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison and other candidates for Democratic National Committee chair will participate in a debate tonight at 7 p.m. hosted by The Huffington Post and the George Washington University’s School of Media and Public Affairs.