55 Politicians Boycotting Donald Trump’s Inauguration – and Why
Congressional Democrats are announcing in droves they won’t attend President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration, and we’ll be updating the list of politicians who will boycott Trump.
The number of lawmakers boycotting the inauguration shot up after Trump lashed out on Twitter at Georgia Rep. John Lewis, the Civil Rights icon who marched with Martin Luther King Jr., and who said on “Meet the Press” this weekend that he would boycott the inauguration because he doesn’t think Trump’s presidency is legitimate.
Trump responded by tweeting that Lewis was “all talk, talk, talk,” and that he should “spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart.” Then on Tuesday, Trump tweeted again, saying Lewis had claimed Trump’s was the first inauguration he’d boycotted. “WRONG (or lie)!” Trump wrote.
Many Democrats have announced they won’t attend the inauguration in support of Lewis, but they’re citing plenty of other reasons, including Trump’s insults against women and minorities, his attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, and the reports of Russian hacking in attempts to sway the election in his favor.
Here’s the complete, and growing, list of lawmakers who are boycotting the inauguration — as well as those who aren’t attending, but don’t say they’re boycotting.
Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Arizona)
We must stand against Trump's bigotries- birther conspiracies, attacks on Gold⭐️ parents & civil rights heroes. I won't attend inauguration.
— Ruben Gallego (@RepRubenGallego) January 17, 2017
Trump’s disrespect for the family of Capt. Humayun Khan and Lewis, as well as his role in the birther conspiracy, are the reasons Gallego pointed to when he announced on Twitter he wouldn’t attend the inauguration.
Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Arizona)
— azcentral (@azcentral) January 15, 2017
“After the press conference that Donald Trump had, it struck me as very clear that the horse is not going to change colors,” Grijalva told the Arizona Republic. He said he’ll be home working with constituents rather than attending the inauguration.
Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D-N.H.)
Instead of going to the Inauguration, I'll go to religious services to pray for all of our leaders and people, then will serve my district.
— Carol Shea-Porter (@TeamSheaPorter) January 17, 2017
Shea-Porter is headed to religious services rather than the inauguration, where she plans to pray for our leaders.
Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-California)
“A real president doesn’t use the office to make millions more for his own wealth or his family’s wealth,” Ruiz told the Desert Sun, citing Trump’s lack of respect for the presidency and for others.
Rep. Tony Cardenas (D-Calif.)
Cardenas is skipping the inauguration and attending the Women’s March on Washington with his family instead, he announced on Facebook.
Rep. Judy Chu (D-California)
After much thought, I have decided to #StandWithJohnLewis and not attend the inauguration.
— Judy Chu (@RepJudyChu) January 15, 2017
Chu is supporting Lewis by skipping Trump’s inauguration.
Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-California)
— Wilfred Chan (@wilfredchan) January 16, 2017
In a statement to journalist Wilfred Chan, Roybal-Allard said it the “disparaging remarks the President-elect has made against many groups” are “deeply contrary to my values,” so she won’t be attending the inauguration.
Rep. Mark Takano (D-California)
"All talk, no action."
— Mark Takano (@RepMarkTakano) January 14, 2017
Takano also stands with Lewis in choosing not to attend the inauguration.
Rep. Karen Bass (D-California)
After receiving an overwhelming response on the twitter poll, I've decided not to attend the inauguration of President-elect Trump. pic.twitter.com/ig4kFn0GGH
— Congressmember Bass (@RepKarenBass) January 17, 2017
Bass put the inauguration question to Twitter in a poll. After the overwhelming majority voted against her attendance, she officially announced she wouldn’t be going.
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-California)
I never ever contemplated attending the inauguration or any activities associated w/ @realDonaldTrump. I wouldn't waste my time.
— Maxine Waters (@MaxineWaters) January 15, 2017
No minced words for Waters, who said on Twitter she wouldn’t waste her time attending the inauguration.
Rep. Ted Lieu (D-California)
— Rep. Ted Lieu (@RepTedLieu) January 14, 2017
“While I do not dispute that Trump won the Electoral College, I cannot normalize his behavior or the disparaging and un-American statements he has made,” Lieu said in his statement about skipping the ceremony.
Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-California)
Lofgren told the Los Angeles Times she won’t attend, noting, “I acknowledge the fact that he is the incoming president, but I’m not in the mood to celebrate that fact.”
Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (D-California)
It is with a heavy heart and deep personal conviction that I have decided not to attend the #TrumpInauguration on January 20, 2017.
— Mark DeSaulnier (@RepDeSaulnier) January 14, 2017
It’s “deep personal conviction” that’s keeping DeSaulnier from attending the inauguration.
Rep. Barbara Lee (D-California)
Inauguration should be a celebration. But we have nothing to celebrate on Jan 20. Instead of attending, I will be organizing. pic.twitter.com/P4whhl91ll
— Rep. Barbara Lee (@RepBarbaraLee) January 12, 2017
“On Jan. 20th, I will not be celebrating or honoring an incoming president who rode racism, sexism, xenophobia and bigotry to the White House,” Lee said in a statement. Instead, she wrote, she’ll be “organizing and preparing for resistance” on Inauguration Day.
Rep. Jared Huffman (D-California)
On Facebook, Huffman wrote that he will spend Inauguration Day with his constituents “making a positive difference in our community.”
Rep. Juan Vargas (D-California)
I will not be attending the Inauguration. Instead, I will be praying for our country and for our community with the people of my district.
— Rep. Juan Vargas (@RepJuanVargas) January 17, 2017
Vargas said on Twitter he will be home “praying for our country and for our community with the people of my district” during the inauguration. “I studied to be a priest for a long time and we all make mistakes, but the things that he has said, the mocking of disabled people in particular, the things he’s said about Mexicans, it would be very hard for me to be in a place like that celebrating,” Vargas told the Los Angeles Times.
Rep. Darren Soto (D-Florida)
Trump’s Twitter remarks about Lewis were enough to push Soto off the inauguration attendee list, he told WFTV.
Rep. Alcee L. Hastings (D-Florida)
I will be boycotting the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump. See my full statement here: https://t.co/p9F5dqoDl4
— Alcee L. Hastings (@RepHastingsFL) January 17, 2017
Hastings announced he would boycott the inauguration and stay in Florida with a statement. “This decision is not a protest of the results of the Electoral College, but rather, an objection to the demagoguery that continues to define the incoming administration,” he wrote.
Rep. John Lewis (D-Georgia)
Lewis said on “Meet the Press” that he doesn’t think Trump’s presidency is legitimate.
Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-Illinois)
— Luis V. Gutierrez (@RepGutierrez) January 10, 2017
Gutierrez is heading to the Women’s March on Washington on Jan. 21 rather than the inauguration, and announced as much on the floor of the House of Representatives. “The reason I’m not going is I can’t bring myself to justify morally or intellectually the immense power we are placing in that man’s hands,” he said.
Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Illinois)
The Chicago Tribune reports Quigley’s spokesperson said he will not attend the inauguration.
Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-Illinois)
Lipinski is not attending the inauguration, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Rep. John Yarmuth (D-Kentucky)
I believe the office of the President deserves our respect, and that respect must begin with the President-elect himself. My statement: pic.twitter.com/l8eitaourD
— Rep. John Yarmuth (@RepJohnYarmuth) January 17, 2017
Yarmuth says skipping the inauguration is a way to “send the message” that Trump’s behavior, including his remarks about women, people of color, and Lewis, “are not acceptable from the leader of our nation.”
Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-Maine)
— Chellie Pingree (@chelliepingree) January 17, 2017
Pingree issued a statement saying Trump’s actions “threaten the constitutional values our country is based on.” She’s skipping the inauguration because “I won’t dignify or normalize those threats by standing by at his ceremony.”
Rep. Anthony G. Brown (D-Maryland)
Skipping Inauguration.@RepJohnLewis a civil rights hero. Enormous responsibility to be POTUS.I respect the office, can't tolerate disrespect
— Anthony G. Brown (@AnthonyBrownMD4) January 16, 2017
For Brown, Trump’s disrespect of Lewis was enough reason not to attend the inauguration.
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Maryland)
— Rep. Jamie Raskin (@RepRaskin) January 17, 2017
“The moral and political legitimacy of this president are in the gravest doubt,” Raskin wrote in a statement announcing he wouldn’t attend, posted on Twitter.
Rep. Katherine Clark (D-Massachusetts)
My statement on the upcoming inauguration: pic.twitter.com/dQXE0ztvTf
— Katherine Clark (@RepKClark) January 5, 2017
In a statement posted to Twitter, Clark said, “After discussions with hundreds of my constituents, I do not feel that I can contribute to the normalization of the President-elect’s divisive rhetoric by participating in the inauguration.”
Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Michigan)
In a statement issued after Trump’s tweets against Lewis, Conyers said he was missing the inauguration because of “my concern over a number of divisive and inflammatory statements made by the president-elect,” the Detroit News reported.
Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minnesota)
I will not celebrate a man who preaches a politics of division and hate. I won't be attending Donald Trump's inauguration.
— Rep. Keith Ellison (@keithellison) January 16, 2017
Ellison leaned into the brevity of Twitter for his announcement: Trump “preaches a politics of division and hate,” he said.
Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Mississippi)
Thompson’s legislative director, Cory Horton, told the Clarion Ledger that Thompson won’t attend the inauguration because of Trump’s remarks about Lewis, and because of concerns about Russian involvement in the election.
Rep. Donald Payne Jr. (D-New Jersey)
— Donald Payne Jr. (@RepDonaldPayne) January 17, 2017
Payne issued a statement saying he won’t attend the inauguration because Trump “has proven unfit to hold” the office of the presidency.
Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-New Jersey)
— Bonnie WatsonColeman (@RepBonnie) January 15, 2017
Watson Coleman will attend an interfaith prayer vigil in Trenton, NJ, instead of the inauguration. “The constituents of the New Jersey’s 12th District is a cross section of the many groups and millions of Americans that this incoming Administration has turned its back on,” she said in a statement, News 12 New Jersey reported.
Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-New York)
— Yvette D. Clarke (@RepYvetteClarke) January 14, 2017
Clarke is standing with Lewis, and skipping the inauguration.
Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-New York)
I will NOT be attending the inauguration for @realDonaldTrump!
— Adriano Espaillat (@RepEspaillat) January 15, 2017
The tone of Espaillat’s tweet looks to be all the explanation necessary for his not attending.
Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-New York)
The rhetoric + actions of @realDonaldTrump have been so far beyond the pale, I cannot in good conscience participate in this inauguration.
— (((Rep. Nadler))) (@RepJerryNadler) January 16, 2017
Nadler said on Twitter his conscience won’t let him attend after witnessing Trump’s “rhetoric + actions.”
Rep. Jose E. Serrano (D-New York)
— Jose E. Serrano (@RepJoseSerrano) January 12, 2017
Serrano’s skipping the inauguration, saying on Twitter Trump “has no regard for my constituents.”
Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-New York)
Slaughter told the Democrat and Chronicle she stands with Lewis in skipping in the inauguration.
Rep. Nydia Velázquez (D-New York)
— Rep. Nydia Velazquez (@NydiaVelazquez) January 14, 2017
Velazquez cited the “tone” of the Trump campaign when announcing on Twitter she wouldn’t attend the inauguration.
Rep. Alma S. Adams (D-North Carolina)
Today I released the following statement about the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump. pic.twitter.com/gJsFkO55Me
— Alma S. Adams (@RepAdams) January 17, 2017
“I cannot in good faith and consciousness pretend to celebrate the inauguration of someone who has spoken so horribly about women, minorities and the disabled,” Adams said in a statement posted to Twitter. “Instead, I am staying home to continue working toward our priorities and to meet with my constituents, many of whom are fearful of what lies ahead.”
Rep. G. K. Butterfield (D-North Carolina)
After prayerful consideration, I cannot in good conscious attend the inaugural ceremony for President-elect Donald Trump. (1/3)
— G. K. Butterfield (@GKButterfield) January 17, 2017
Butterfield cites Trump’s “brand of division & insult” and his belief that “it would be hurtful to my constituents for me to attend” as reasons to boycott the inauguration.
Rep. Marcia L. Fudge (D-Ohio)
— Rep. Marcia L. Fudge (@RepMarciaFudge) January 15, 2017
Fudge cited Trump’s treatment of Lewis as her reason for staying home.
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Oregon)
“Here is a person who ran a campaign that is the antithesis of everything I’ve worked for in public service,” Blumenauer told Oregon Public Broadcasting. He announced on Facebook he would spend the time talking with his constituents in Oregon.
Rep. Peter A. DeFazio (D-Oregon)
DeFazio said in statement to Oregon Public Broadcasting he doesn’t usually attend Washington celebrations like the inauguration, so skipping the ceremony isn’t out of the ordinary for him.
Rep. Kurt Schrader (D-Oregon)
“I’m just not a big Trump fan,” Schrader told Oregon Public Broadcasting. “I’ve met the guy and never been impressed with him. He’s the president of the United States now, so I’ll do my best to work with him when I think he’s doing the right thing for the country. But 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. Brendan Boyle (D-Pennsylvania)
Boyle calls Trump’s election “a grave mistake” on Facebook, and while he thinks it’s wrong to challenge the legal legitimacy of Trump’s presidency, he says he won’t attend the inauguration to celebrate it.
Rep. Robert A. Brady (D-Pennsylvania)
Brady said in an interview with ABC6 in Pennsylvania that he’s sitting out the inauguration to support Lewis.
Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Pennsylvania)
I’m going to #StandWithJohnLewis. I won’t attend the Inauguration on Friday.
Doyle wrote on Twitter he’d support Lewis by skipping the inauguration.
Rep. Dwight Evans (D-Pennsylvania)
I #StandWithJohnLewis. I will not be attending the inauguration. Russian hacking must be investigated and I do not support the repeal of ACA
— Dwight Evans (@RepDwightEvans) January 16, 2017
Russian hacks, attacks on Lewis and Republicans plans to repeal the Affordable Care Act have Evans skipping the ceremony.
Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas)
I will not attend this year’s inauguration ceremony. Here's why: https://t.co/APvdTrSsMV
— Joaquin Castro (@JoaquinCastrotx) January 17, 2017
Castro won’t attend the inauguration because of Trump’s “utter lack of respect for so many Americans.” He cited Trump’s Twitter attack on John Lewis as the “latest example.”
Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-Texas)
I will not be attending the inauguration this Friday. Read my statement here. pic.twitter.com/4gt6AA4u16
— Lloyd Doggett (@RepLloydDoggett) January 17, 2017
Doggett announced he’d skip the inauguration on Twitter. In his statement, he wrote of Trump, “By repeatedly taking the lowest road, he is not showing respect for the highest office. We are in for a long struggle that must strategically utilize every nonviolent opposition tool available.”
Rep. Al Green (D-Texas)
“I will not attend the inauguration because conscience says it is the right thing to do,” Green said in an interview with the Texas Tribune.
Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tennessee)
— Steve Cohen (@RepCohen) January 16, 2017
It’s out of respect for Lewis and because of Trump’s remarks that Cohen is skipping the ceremony, he said on Twitter.
Rep. Don Beyer (D-Virginia)
I just told hundreds of my constituents that I will not be attending the Inauguration Ceremony this coming Friday. Here is what I said: pic.twitter.com/YLJz5OWjXe
— Rep. Don Beyer (@RepDonBeyer) January 16, 2017
Beyer writes that Trump’s “values and actions are the antithesis of those I hold dear,” and while Beyer says he respects the transition of power, he’s not attending the inauguration because he won’t “be part of normalizing or legitimizing” the Trump presidency.
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Washington)
— Rep. Pramila Jayapal (@RepJayapal) January 15, 2017
Jayapal said on Twitter she is staying “with the people of my district” rather than heading to Washington, D.C. for the inauguration.
Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wisconsin)
— Rep. Mark Pocan (@repmarkpocan) January 15, 2017
Pocan wrote on Twitter that Trump needs to start acting like the president, instead of “an immature, undignified reality star with questionable friends and a Twitter addiction.” He pointed to Trump’s treatment of Lewis, his conflicts of interest and the reports of his ties to Russia as his reasons for skipping the inauguration.
Rep. Grace Napolitano (D-California)
According to the Los Angeles Times, Napolitano is not attending the inauguration.
Rep. John McNerney (D-California)
The Stockton Record reports that McNerney isn’t attending the inauguration because of a scheduling conflict.
Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-Florida)
Wilson told Miami’s 7 News that she has a wedding to attend on Jan. 20 and so won’t make the inauguration.
Rep. William Lacy Clay (D-Missouri)
According to a report from St. Louis Today, Clay will spend Inauguration Day speaking to school kids in his district.
Rep. Adam Smith (D-Washington)
Smith told news station King 5 he is spending the day in his Washington state office working with constituents.