The White House received backlash for shelling out $139,000 for this year’s Christmas tree lighting ceremony, topped with an additional $171,000 for the event, all while the US gripes with growing inflation costs.
The federal government appeared to be pulling out all the stops for the 2021 National Christmas Tree Lighting Festivities, which will include a live audience and performances by Patti LaBelle, Billy Porter, Chris Stapleton and others, TMZ reported.
This event will be a return to normal after last year’s ceremony took place virtually due to the pandemic, and the lighting will be slightly cheaper than the $160,000 the Trump administration paid in 2019.
Still, many found the spending a bit tone deaf as inflation soared to 6.2 percent this fall, the highest it’s been since 1990 – causing the price of basic goods and services to soar in the US.
Jill Biden welcomed the White House Christmas tree on Monday. The lighting ceremony will cost $139,000 with an additional $171,000 to hold the live event
Many criticized President Joe Biden for the costly ceremony while he tours Nantucket, Massachusetts for the Thanksgiving holiday weekened
Inflation has risen to 6.2 percent, the highest it’s been since 1990
The costs of basic goods and services have shot up and are expected to increase
The lavish tree lighting festivities brought out a flurry of tweets against the excessive spending as Biden and the White House had tried to downplay the effects of inflation in the previous months.
One Twitter user named Gwenn wrote, ‘Your Tax dollars hard at work.’
Another user with the handle J.J.M also criticized the spending’s lack of Christmas charity, tweeting, ‘Money that could be helping those in need but go off.
A Twitter user with the name Aloha simply wrote, ‘Easy to spend peoples money.’
Another Twitter with the handle name @coolguy8623 also slammed Biden for the spending after the president urged the IRS to snoop around people’s payments and transfers of $600 or more through their bank accounts.
The user tweeted, ‘So lighting up a tree is more important than 3-4 peoples total yearly income, yet irs needs to monitor regular working people’s bank accounts???’
Many tweeted in anger about the White House’s lavish spending on the Christmas tree
The White House Christmas Tree arrived on Monday, where it was received by First Lady Jill Biden, her son Hunter, daughter-in-law Melissa Cohen and grandson Beau.
Two Clydesdale horses – Ben and Winston – drew the tree up the North driveway as the Marine band played ‘Oh Christmas Tree.’
Jill broke off a bit of its branch and walked it over to her grandson, delivering it with a kiss.
The Fraser Fir tree is from Jefferson, North Carolina, and will be installed in the White House this week. The chandelier in the Blue Room must be temporarily removed to make room for the tree, which nearly touches the ceiling.
The tree’s theme – along with the theme of this year’s White House decorations – are chosen by the first lady but have yet to be revealed.
First lady Jill Biden hands a branch from the official 2021 White House Christmas Tree to Beau Biden, son of Hunter Biden, center, at the White House. Standing with Hunter Biden is his wife, Melissa Cohen
The National Christmas Tree Association choose the tree that is the centerpiece of the state rooms of the White House.
Rusty and Beau Estes, owners of Peak Farms, are two time previous winners of the Christmas tree contest. They previously presented trees to Laura Bush in 2008 and Michelle Obama in 2021.
This will be the thirteenth tree from North Carolina growers to serve as the official White House Christmas tree, nearly twice as many as runners-up Washington and Wisconsin.
The tradition of the White House Christmas tree goes back 56 years to 1965 when Lady Bird Johnson was first lady.