Critics of President Donald Trump pounced on the inclusion of a ceremony for citizenship naturalization on the second night of the Republican National Convention.
Progressive cable news channel MSNBC led the chorus against the ceremony when anchor Joy Reid asked NBC analyst Jacob Soboroff about the response on social media.
“Well, ‘galling’ is the word that I’m seeing being used, Joy, by immigration activists and lawyers online, that the administration, the Trump administration with some of the most restrictive harsh and cruel, in the words of a former administration official, a former ICE official to me, would use a naturalization ceremony for political purposes in this context,” Soboroff responded.
“And it goes beyond that, that was a very special moment for those five people in the White House this evening or earlier today, but everyone should know, or people should know, that there are literally tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of people who are eligible and awaiting their own naturalization ceremonies,” he added.
“And not only their own naturalization ceremonies,” he continued, “but the ability to vote this November, and they are being prevented from doing so because the Trump administration refuses them to allow them to have those naturalization ceremonies remotely, via zoom, and they say it is not possible, they are uncomfortable with that.”
Here’s the video from MSNBC:
Reid later said that she was most offended by the naturalization ceremony because President Trump made it about himself, specifically for politics.
“It’s monarchical! It’s the use of the monarchy!” said Reid.
She reiterated her point with a tweet.
“My mother was a naturalized citizen. Donald Trump using the ceremony that meant so much to her (in large part because she was excited to be able to vote) IN the White House, is really hard to watch,” she tweeted.
“It’s an abomination,” she added, “in that this ceremony is NOT about worshiping a president.”
Other critics took to social media to excoriate the president for holding the ceremony at the White House during the GOP convention.
“I like to think that I cannot be surprised by the depravity of these people, but that ceremony got me. It was honestly one of the lowest thing I’ve even seen in American politics,” said Elie Mystal, a correspondent for The Nation.
“Dystopian. A racist xenophobe using a naturalization ceremony and the people’s house as a campaign prop. So sickening,” said former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe.
“[A] lot of white conservatives right now feeling pretty good about themselves for using people as props in a disingenuous naturalization ceremony, good for you guys,” said Washington Post video editor Dave Jorgensen.
“That naturalization ceremony might be the most cynical stunt I’ve ever seen from an American politician,” said Washington Post contributor Radley Balko.
“To see it co-opted in the service of a cheap political propaganda stunt makes me sick,” said screenwriter Gary Whitta.
“Creepy beyond belief. The sight of Child-Separator-and-Trump-Boot-Licker-in-Chief, @DHS_Wolf alongside the white supremacist who is the current occupant of the White House at this political naturalization ceremony is a scene so perverse it actually hurts,” said Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-Texas).
Here’s the video of the naturalization ceremony:
WATCH: Trump participates in naturalization ceremony at the White House | 2020 RNC Night 2