Trump campaign criticizes Biden for declaring Transgender Day of Visibility, because it is also Easter

Donald Trump’s campaign and religious conservatives are criticizing President Biden for proclaiming March 31 — which corresponds with Easter Sunday this year — as Transgender Day of Visibility.

The Democratic president issued the proclamation Friday, calling on “all Americans to join us in lifting up the lives and voices of transgender people throughout our Nation and to work toward eliminating violence and discrimination based on gender identity.”

March 31 this year happens to be Easter, one of Christianity’s holiest celebrations. Trump’s campaign accused Biden, a devout Roman Catholic, of being insensitive to religion, and fellow Republicans piled on.

“We call on Joe Biden’s failing campaign and White House to issue an apology to the millions of Catholics and Christians across America who believe tomorrow is for one celebration only — the resurrection of Jesus Christ,” Karoline Leavitt, the Trump campaign’s press secretary, said Saturday. She accused the Biden administration of a “years-long assault on the Christian faith.”

House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) said on social media that the “Biden White House has betrayed the central tenet of Easter” and called the decision “outrageous and abhorrent.”

White House spokesperson Andrew Bates said the Republicans criticizing Biden “are seeking to divide and weaken our country with cruel, hateful and dishonest rhetoric.”

“As a Christian who celebrates Easter with family, President Biden stands for bringing people together and upholding the dignity and freedoms of every American,” Bates said. “President Biden will never abuse his faith for political purposes or for profit.”

Biden regularly attends Mass and considers his Catholic upbringing to be a core part of his morality and identity. But his support for gay marriage and abortion rights have put him at odds with many conservative Christians. Some Catholics have suggested he should not receive Holy Communion because of those positions.

In 2021, Biden met with Pope Francis at the Vatican and afterward told reporters that the pontiff said he was a “good Catholic” who should keep receiving Communion.

Boak writes for the Associated Press.

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