President Donald Trump was seen for the first time in days on Wednesday as he and first lady Melania braved the rain to participate in the wreath laying at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery for the observance of Veterans Day.
Vice President Mike Pence and Trump’s daughter and Senior Advisor Ivanka Trump, donning a face mask. also joined the president and first lady for the short trip from D.C. to Arlington.
Also in attendance was Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller. Trump ousted Defense Secretary Mark Esper, who was not at the wreath laying, in a tweet on Monday and said Miller would take over in an acting capacity.
Trump stepped forward to salute the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and observe a moment of silence before stepping back under an umbrella as a lone trumpeter played TAPS.
Joe Biden and his wife Jill participated in their own commemoration of Veterans Day by laying a wreath at the Korean War Memorial at Penn’s Landing in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at the same time Trump held his event in Virginia on Wednesday.
President Donald Trump was seen for the first time since Sunday as he and first lady Melania commemorated Veterans Day at Arlington National Cemetery on Wednesday
Trump laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier to mark Veterans Day
Melania was escorted by a Military member as her husband participated in the wreath laying
Vice President Mike Pence (left) joined Trump and Melania for the president’s first public event in days
Trump’s daughter and White House Senior Advisor Ivanka Trump also joined the president for the commemoration
Waiting in the rain: Active Duty and Military veterans awaiting Trump’s arrival at Arlington National Cemetery
Trump saluted the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. He has not been seen since the weekend – as major media outlets projected Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 election
Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller attended the commemoration Wednesday after taking over for Mark Esper Monday as Trump ousted his Defense Secretary via tweet
In his Veterans Day proclamation Wednesday morning, Trump touted the work his administration has done to improve veterans’ lives and reiterated his commitments to veterans and military members.
‘As Commander in Chief, I have relentlessly fought to support America’s veterans,’ Trump wrote. ‘For far too long, our Government had not fully met its obligation to provide for ‘him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow and his orphan.’
‘I recognize that this country and its people are duty-bound to care for our exceptional veterans, their families, and their survivors. That is why, throughout my time in office, I have worked tirelessly to improve the health, welfare, and economic prosperity of these treasured people,’ he continued.
Trump also lauded his moves as president to overhaul the Department of Veterans Affairs, including increasing funding and giving them the choice to receive care from local healthcare providers.
He said another accomplishment within the VA was ‘removing employees who were not giving our veterans the care and attention they deserve and making the agency more accountable to the heroes it serves.’
The wreath laying Wednesday morning is the first time Trump has been seen since Sunday as he has not held any public events or had anything on his official presidential schedule the past few days as he continues to claim he won the presidential election despite projections showing Joe Biden as the victor.
President-elect Joe Biden and his wife Jill also participated in a wreath laying to commemorate Veterans Day on Wednesday in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The Biden’s, who donned masks unliked the first couple, paid their respects at the Korean War Memorial at Penn’s Landing in Philadelphia
Veterans and active duty Military attended the ceremony
Since then Trump has not addressed the nation other than via Twitter and has not conceded to Biden.
He did, however, emerge from the White House Saturday and Sunday for two separate rounds of golf at his club in Sterling, Virginia.
Biden, on the other hand, has been holding public events daily and has made several public statements since Saturday, when major media outlets projected him the winner of the presidential election.
The 40th commissioner of the New York Police Department, Bernie Kerik – who was appointed by then-Mayor Rudy Giuliani – attended the ceremony at Arlington Cemetery on Wednesday
Trump’s only significant presidential action since the election has been abruptly firing Defense Secretary Mark Esper, which he announced on Twitter.
Bernie Kerik, the 40th commissioner of the New York Police Department, attended the president’s wreath laying Wednesday morning.
‘Just attended the Veterans Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery with President @realDonaldTrump. #VeteransDay2020’ Kerik, who was appointed by then-New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani as NYPD Police Commissioner, tweeted along with a video of the ceremony.
Kerik only served in his capacity with the NYPD from 200-2001.
Giuliani and Kerik remain friends and have been seen several times together – including during a press conference in Philadelphia over the weekend where they provided a witness who said he was not allowed to monitor the vote counting properly.
The man also turned out to be a convicted sex offender.
Kerik himself was convicted of tax fraud and lying to federal investigators in 2010. He spent more than three years in prison before being pardoned by Trump.