Trump, first lady take part in National Christmas Tree lighting

President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump's newest Russia adviser, Andrew Peek, leaves post: report Hawley expects McConnell's final impeachment resolution to give White House defense ability to motion to dismiss Trump rips New York City sea wall: 'Costly, foolish' and 'environmentally unfriendly idea' MORE on Thursday took part in the annual National Christmas Tree lighting, making brief remarks at the celebration just hours after House Democrats made clear they would move to impeach him in the coming weeks.

The president and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump beefs up impeachment defense with Dershowitz, Starr Trump welcomes LSU to the White House: 'Go Tigers' The Hill's Morning Report — President Trump on trial MORE attended a celebration on the Ellipse just outside the White House. Trump did not mention impeachment or politics in brief remarks. He thanked staffers who made the event possible and recounted a bit of history about the ceremony and Christmas itself.

"Melania and I would like to wish you a very, very merry Christmas," Trump told guests.


The president then counted down from five seconds before the first lady flipped a switch to light the tree. A band played “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” as Trump stood behind the podium.

Hundreds of people assembled near the Ellipse to witness the tree lighting, which was followed by musical performances by various artists.

Government attendees included Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt, Rep. Mark MeadowsMark Randall MeadowsRepublicans criticize Pelosi for gifting pens used to sign impeachment articles Trump, Democrats set for brawl on Iran war powers Overnight Defense: Iran crisis eases as Trump says Tehran 'standing down' | Dems unconvinced on evidence behind Soleimani strike | House sets Thursday vote on Iran war powers MORE (R-N.C.), Rep. Jim JordanJames (Jim) Daniel JordanSunday shows preview: Lawmakers gear up for Senate impeachment trial Trump's legal team gets set for impeachment trial Five lingering questions as impeachment heads to Senate MORE (R-Ohio) and Rep. John RatcliffeJohn Lee RatcliffeTrump's legal team gets set for impeachment trial Five lingering questions as impeachment heads to Senate Graham: Not 'wise' for House Republicans to serve on Trump trial team MORE (R-Texas), each of whom Trump recognized by name.

Melania Trump earlier this week unveiled the White House Christmas decorations, which adhered to the chosen theme of "The Spirit of America.”

In total, the decorations include 58 Christmas trees, more than 15,000 bows and more than 2,500 strands of lights, according to the White House.

The president complained during his campaign for president that Americans were no longer saying "Merry Christmas." He has suggested at various times since taking office that the country has resumed using that phrase.