President Trump broke with 20 years of White House tradition by opting not to host a dinner to mark the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting and reflection.
Instead of a dinner commemorating the religious holiday Eid al-Fitr, the president and first lady Melania Trump released a statement on Saturday offering “warm greetings.”
“Muslims in the United States joined those around the world during the holy month of Ramadan to focus on acts of faith and charity,” they said. “Now, as they commemorate Eid with family and friends, they carry on the tradition of helping neighbors and breaking bread with people from all walks of life.”
The past three administrations – Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama – have held traditional iftar dinners that often included members of Congress and prominent members of the Muslim community.
Trump’s comments as president and on the campaign trail about Muslims have often raised eyebrows.
In an interview in March 2016, he said “Islam hates us” and “there’s a tremendous hatred there.”
His highly touted travel ban against six-mostly Muslim countries has been in legal limbo in the courts.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson also broke decades of tradition at the State Department by not hosting a reception on Eid al-Fitr.