According to The Washington Post, at least one member of the D.C. City Council wants to curtail spending on the presidential inauguration now that Donald Trump has won the election.
A proposal by council member Elissa Silverman (I-At Large) would eliminate or reduce the city’s funding for a stand to be built on the steps of the John A. Wilson Building on Pennsylvania Avenue NW, a few blocks from the White House.
Silverman said her proposal was partially motivated by concerns about wasteful spending. The stand built for Obama’s second inauguration in 2013 was carpeted, heated and had flat-screen televisions, and was built at a cost of $342,000.
But Silverman also admitted to the Post that she wanted to make a statement about Trump, who she said has stated positions that are hostile to D.C. residents.
Not everyone is on board with Silverman’s suggestion, according to the Post.
“I think that it’s very important that we as the government of the nation’s capital put our best foot forward on Inauguration Day,” council member Brandon T. Todd (D-Ward 4) said. “Donald Trump has won. The people have spoken.”
“We would not have the conversation if the Democratic nominee won,” said Todd, a Clinton supporter.
Todd is right. According to a source at the National Park Service, which oversees permitting for the inaugural parade, the mayor’s office submitted plans in the spring for an even larger viewing stand than in 2013 and requested the removal of a historic lamppost in order to accommodate it. That was when they thought Clinton would win.
The cost of the stand is actually not that large when compared to the $18.2 million that the District spent on the inauguration in 2013, but Silverman is having a hard time coming to terms with Trump’s victory, and cutting back or eliminating the stand is her way of helping her cope.