Trump calls for military parade to take place on Veterans Day: report

Trump calls for military parade to take place on Veterans Day: report
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpKoch-backed group launches six-figure ad buy against Heitkamp Anti-abortion Dem wins primary fight Lipinski holds slim lead in tough Illinois primary fight MORE has reportedly directed the Pentagon to plan his proposed military parade to travel from the White House to the Capitol on Nov. 11, Veterans Day. 

National security adviser H.R. McMaster gave the president's instructions in an unclassified memo to the Department of Defense, according to a senior administration official who summarized the memo to Politico.

In the memo, dated Tuesday, McMaster conveys Trump's desire for Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisOvernight Defense: Senate sides with Trump on military role in Yemen | Dem vets push for new war authorization on Iraq anniversary | General says time isn't 'right' for space corps Senate sides with Trump on providing Saudi military support Top general: Now not the 'right' time to create a 'Space Force' MORE to brief Trump on "concepts of operation" for the parade.


The president has repeatedly voiced support for grand military demonstration, particularly since visiting Paris for last year's Bastille Day celebrations, which included a military parade down the Champs-Élysées. 

A number of logistical hurdles have emerged during the early planning process for such an event. Pentagon officials have reportedly been concerned about cost, the transportation of troops and materiel and if it is feasible to have tanks on D.C. streets without causing considerable damage. 

White House budget director Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyBipartisan House bill would replace consumer director with panel The consumer protection bureau is having a Trump-induced identity crisis Overnight Regulation: Senate takes first step to passing Dodd-Frank rollback | House passes bill requiring frequent reviews of financial regs | Conservatives want new checks on IRS rules MORE told lawmakers last week that the event could cost between $10 million and $30 million.

Lawmakers, particularly Democrats, have also expressed opposition to the optics of the parade. Many raised concerns that a military display could provoke North Korea or make the United States appear boastful and insecure. 

Even some Republicans, including Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamSteyer brings his push to impeach Trump to town halls across the nation Trump formally sends Pompeo nomination to Senate GOP leaders to Trump: Leave Mueller alone MORE (R-S.C.), said that a military parade could send the wrong message. 

“I don’t mind having a parade honoring the service and sacrifice of our military members,” Graham said. “I’m not looking for a Soviet-style hardware display. That’s not who we are, it’s kind of cheesy and I think it shows weakness, quite frankly.”

Many lawmakers have urged Trump to instead direct funds to supporting mental health services for veterans, rather than a parade. 

A poll released Tuesday found that a majority of Americans, 61 percent, disapprove of the idea of a military parade, compared to only 26 percent who support it. Three-quarters of respondents said the parade would not be a good use of government funds.