President Donald Trump declared Monday as Columbus Day, praising the Italian explorer as an “intrepid pioneer.”
“On Columbus Day, we draw inspiration from this intrepid pioneer’s spirit of adventure,” he wrote in his statement proclaiming the holiday.
The president hailed the explorer’s expedition to the New World and his inspiration for future adventures.
“Today, we commemorate this great explorer, whose courage, skill, and drive for discovery are at the core of the American spirit,” he wrote.
The president also acknowledged Columbus’s Italian heritage, praising the Italian-American contributions to the United States as well as the continued alliance with Italy.
“Our relationship, built on shared values and a commitment to furthering peace and prosperity, continues to benefit both of our nations,” he wrote. President Trump will welcome Italian President Sergio Mattarella to the White House next week and host a reception in honor of Italian Americans.
The president continues to proclaim Columbus Day, despite a growing movement in leftist governments to replace the holiday with “Indigenous Peoples’ Day” such as Washington, DC, and the states of Maine and New Mexico.
President Franklin Delano Roosevelt designated Columbus Day as a national holiday in 1934 and in 1971, the holiday was made a federal holiday designated the second Monday in October.