A Donald Trump-supporting super PAC is spending $1 million to put out a political ad that thanks the president for many things, concluding with a little girl thanking him for allowing her to say “Merry Christmas” again.
The claim, however, much like the other issues that the actors in the ad “thank” Trump for, is bogus. The insinuation by many pro-Trump conservatives over this holiday season has been that Trump is a president who isn’t afraid to say “Merry Christmas.”
The ad with the girl thanking Trump, put forward by America First Policies, attempts to bolster his previous claim that he brought Christmas back to the White House.
Trump said as much at a campaign rally last month.
"I told you that we would be saying 'Merry Christmas' again, right," he said.
Of course, previous presidents have said Merry Christmas many, many times over. The phrase has never really left the White House — even though several conservatives claim it had under former President Barack Obama.
To make that claim, they have to ignore a plethora of video evidence that demonstrates they were wrong.
Since the “War on Christmas” nonsense is heating up again, here’s the countless times President Obama said “Merry Christmas.” Because we never stopped saying it, nobody ever said you couldn’t, and no President has ever failed to do it. pic.twitter.com/8VRcAlvFLb— Daniel P. Redman (@RedmanSocStudy) December 11, 2017
To top that off, the White House under Obama was decorated extensively during his time in office, so much so that people actually criticized him in 2012 for having too many Christmas trees.
“As Americans face a fiscal cliff, the Obamas make do with 54 Christmas trees,” an Investors Business Daily commentator wrote that year.
The Obamas couldn’t win — either they were erroneously chastised for not saying Christmas enough, or when they did flaunt the Christmas spirit, it was too much.
There’s another disturbing element to this entire ordeal. The little girl in the ad is expressing her appreciation for the privilege and the ability to say "Merry Christmas," as if she had been restricted in some way from being able to say those two words previously.
MSNBC’s Chris Hayes mocks that insinuation, tweeting out a comically satirical version of events where the little girl and others may have been “punished” for saying “Merry Christmas” under the previous president.
Backstory: this girl had been in prison for the last three years, after being prosecuted by the Obama administration for saying Merry Christmas at age 4. https://t.co/yYv4NKGFUO— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) December 21, 2017
And as this little girl and others worry about being able to say “Merry Christmas” — again, a threat that was only perceived under Obama, but never actually real — millions of children across the country are in real danger of losing health care coverage because Congress and Trump won’t reauthorize funding for Children's Health Insurance Program. His administration also proposed significantly cutting funding for food stamps — a program in which 45 percent of its beneficiaries are children.
So while conservatives rail on about this “fake” victory in the embellished “War on Christmas,” this administration has made real threats to the livelihoods of children across the nation. Christmas is an important time for millions of Americans, but there was never any real issue with celebrating it or wishing anyone “Merry Christmas” before Trump came along.
The same cannot be said for the health and well-being of children across the U.S. For many kids desperately waiting for action to be taken on their health care coverage, the holiday has already become a blue Christmas.