Baltimore Mayor Jack Young (D) wants President Donald Trump to cancel his plans to visit the city’s Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine on Memorial Day, citing health concerns stemming from the Chinese coronavirus and the price tag attached to a presidential visit.
“I wish that the President, as our nation’s leader, would set a positive example and not travel during this holiday weekend,” Young said, according to CBS Baltimore. “I would hope that the President would change his mind and decide to remain at home. If he decides, however, to move forward with his scheduled trip to Baltimore we will, of course, be prepared for his visit.”
Young also said the city “can’t afford to shoulder” the cost of the president’s visit as it loses $20 million monthly.
This week, the White House announced President Trump and first lady Melania Trump will travel to Baltimore Monday.
“The City of Baltimore remains under a Stay at Home order that was put in place to help safeguard our residents from the dangers associated with COVID-19,” the president said in a statement. “We have worked closely with our health professionals to educate the public about the benefits of social distancing and staying home, unless leaving for an essential reason, like visiting a doctor or picking up groceries.”
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R), a frequent critic of the Trump administration, said he will not meet with the president and instead plans to celebrate his birthday with family.
“We are honored that the President and the First Lady have chosen to spend Memorial Day at Fort McHenry,” Hogan said in a statement. “Although Marylanders are encouraged not to gather in large numbers this year – now more than ever – it’s important to reflect on the American heroes who sacrificed their lives for our freedom. Monday is the governor’s birthday, and he has plans to mark the day at home with his family.”
Joining President Trump and the first lady to visit Fort McHenry are Defense Secretary Mark Esper, Interior Secretary David Bernhardt, and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley.