Trump, Pence visit MLK Memorial

Trump, Pence visit MLK Memorial
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President TrumpDonald TrumpCuban embassy in Paris attacked by gasoline bombs Trump Jr. inches past DeSantis as most popular GOP figure in new poll: Axios Trump endorses Ken Paxton over George P. Bush in Texas attorney general race MORE and Vice President Pence on Monday made a brief, unannounced visit to the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C., to mark the national holiday honoring the slain civil rights leader. 

Trump and Pence laid a wreath at the memorial.


"Good morning, everybody. Great day. Beautiful day. Thank you for being here. Appreciate it," Trump said, according to a reporter traveling with him.

The visit to the memorial lasted approximately two minutes, the reporter added.

Trump did not answer questions about the partial government shutdown — now in its 31st day — before departing.

The president and vice president's office had listed no official events on their schedules for Monday.

Pence earlier faced criticism from King’s son, Martin Luther King III, after he compared Trump to the civil rights icon in a pitch for the president’s immigration proposal.

“Martin Luther King Jr. was a bridge builder, not a wall builder,” Martin Luther King III said Monday.

Trump in a tweet earlier Monday morning said the nation celebrates Martin Luther King Jr. "for standing up for the self-evident truth Americans hold so dear, that no matter what the color of our skin or the place of our birth, we are all created equal by God."

The president's tweet linked to a presidential proclamation issued Friday that noted job gains and criminal justice reforms during his administration.

Former President Obama in a tweet on Monday called for Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy to be honored "by standing up for what is right in our communities and taking steps to make a positive impact on the world."

"I’ve always drawn inspiration from what Dr. King called life’s most persistent and urgent question: 'What are you doing for others?' " said Obama, who often took part in service projects while in office to mark the holiday. "Let’s honor his legacy by standing up for what is right in our communities and taking steps to make a positive impact on the world," he added.

-- Avery Anapol contributed to this report, which was updated at 12:17 p.m.