PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The four Democrats who represent Rhode Island in Washington, D.C. say they will be attending President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration on Friday, choosing not to join a growing number of House Democrats boycotting the event.
Congressman John Lewis, D-Georgia organized the boycott, and more than 20 other House colleagues have signed on to stay home on Friday. In an interview on Meet the Press over the weekend, Lewis said he didn’t see Trump as a “legitimate president.”
“It’s my plan to attend the inaugration,” Congressman David Cicilline, D-Rhode Island, said in an interview with Eyewitness News on Sunday. “And not because in any way I support the new President,” he added.
Cicilline said he plans to continue to fight against President-elect Trump, and said he’ll attend his swearing-in as the 45th president in order to show that he will be holding him accountable.
“I choose to be there because I want him to know I’m in this fight, and I’m not going to not be present for one second and sort of give him an open field,” Cicilline said.
Congressman Jim Langevin, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and Senator Jack Reed, all Democrats, also said they would attend.
“It’s a rite of the American Democracy,” Sen. Reed said in an interview, giving a more traditional reason for attending the ceremony.
He said he finds it interesting that even Trump’s election rival, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, plans to attend the inauguration with former President Bill Clinton.
“Because it represents more than just the individual,” Reed said. “It’s the constitution and the country.”
President-elect Trump blasted Congressman Lewis on Twitter for organizing the boycott, writing that Lewis “should finally focus on the burning and crime infested inner-cities of the U.S.”