(WTXF/AP) - It’s history in the making, even though it will be the 58th time. We’re talking about a new US president taking office and the peaceful change of power.
However, more than 40 House Democrats plan to boycott President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration on Friday, casting the Republican businessman as a threat to democracy.
The list has been growing by the day. Here locally, the number who say they won’t attend is up to four.
On Facebook, Congressman Dwight Evans used the hashtag #IStandWithJohnLewis. He went on to say "I will not be attending the Inauguration. Russian hacking must be investigated and I do not support the repeal of ACA (Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare)."
Monday night, Philadelphia Congressman Bob Brady joined the list, saying "I'm not going to the Inaugural. I want to support John Lewis. He's a personal friend of mine."
Also Monday night, Congressman Brendan Boyle made his position known on Facebook. In the end of his statement, he said "I accept the decision of the people. I respect it. But I will not celebrate it."
And across the river, Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman will skip the ceremony to host a prayer vigil. Coleman is the first black woman elected to Congress in New Jersey.
Monday, Trump spoke of national unity to a son of Martin Luther King Jr., seeking to ease friction over the president-elect's squabble with Rep. John Lewis, a protege of the slain civil rights leader.
Martin Luther King III: "When we work together...there is nothing that we, as Americans, can't do." pic.twitter.com/zI1BRugxl4— FOX Business (@FoxBusiness) January 16, 2017
Martin Luther King III: “I think my father would be very concerned…that there are 50-60 million people living in poverty.” pic.twitter.com/MuNorvTVpQ— Fox News (@FoxNews) January 16, 2017
Congressman John Lewis should finally focus on the burning and crime infested inner-cities of the U.S. I can use all the help I can get!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 15, 2017
Congressman John Lewis should spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart (not to......— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 14, 2017
mention crime infested) rather than falsely complaining about the election results. All talk, talk, talk - no action or results. Sad!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 14, 2017
John Lewis said about my inauguration, "It will be the first one that I've missed." WRONG (or lie)! He boycotted Bush 43 also because he...— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 17, 2017
"thought it would be hypocritical to attend Bush's swearing-in....he doesn't believe Bush is the true elected president." Sound familiar! WP— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 17, 2017
Lewis' office confirmed the civil rights icon had missed Bush's swearing in.
"His absence at that time was also a form of dissent," said spokeswoman Brenda Jones. "He did not believe the outcome of that election, including the controversies around the results in Florida and the unprecedented intervention of the US Supreme Court, reflected a free, fair and open democratic process."
Trump and other Republicans have dismissed the boycott and complaints, saying Democrats are sore losers who need to accept the results of the election and move on. Democrats control 194 of 435 House seats.
While many Democrats were furious with the outcome of the drawn out 2000 election in which George W. Bush defeated Al Gore after recounts and a Supreme Court ruling, they generally attended Bush's inauguration as the nation's 43rd president. The House is out of session most of this week and roll call votes are not anticipated, so other lawmakers in both parties may skip the trip.
People are pouring into Washington in record numbers. Bikers for Trump are on their way. It will be a great Thursday, Friday and Saturday!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 17, 2017
Inauguration Day is turning out to be even bigger than expected. January 20th, Washington D.C. Have fun!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 15, 2017