DeSantis Criticizes Biden After President Denies Proclaiming Easter Sunday ‘Transgender Day’

Aaron Pan
By Aaron Pan
April 2, 2024Politics
DeSantis Criticizes Biden After President Denies Proclaiming Easter Sunday ‘Transgender Day’
Republican presidential candidate Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks to his supporters after finding out the 2024 Iowa caucuses results at the Sheraton Hotel in West Des Moines, Iowa, on Jan. 15, 2024. (Madalina Vasiliu/The Epoch Times)

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has raised questions about President Joe Biden’s ability to lead the country after the president denied proclaiming March 31 as “Transgender Day of Visibility” in support of transgender people.

“Wait a minute, he said that didn’t happen, he said he didn’t do that, which raises the question that he’s either not being honest with the public or he really didn’t know what was going on,” Mr. DeSantis said during an event at the Greater Miami Expressway Agency on April 1.

On March 29, President Biden declared March 31 as “Transgender Day of Visibility,” coinciding with Easter Sunday, sparking an uproar among Republicans and conservatives.

The president said that his administration wanted to send a message that transgender people are part of American society while boasting of appointing transgender individuals to leadership positions in his administration and ending a ban that prohibited them from serving openly in the military.

In his proclamation, the president also touted his administration’s efforts to make public services more accessible for transgender Americans, including making official documents like passports more “inclusive” by including an X as the gender marker.

However, on April 1, President Biden dismissed the criticism, saying, “I didn’t do that,” in response to a question from the press about him issuing the proclamation.

At the event, part of promoting new toll relief efforts, the Florida Governor raised doubts about who is running the United States.

“Who’s running the presidency? Is it a bunch of woke, 20-something-year-old White House staffers? So I don’t know who’s in charge. The fact that he’s not owning up to it. Either way, it’s bad,” Mr. DeSantis said. “Either he’s not being honest, or he really didn’t have anything to do with it. It’s the most important, for Christians, holiday on the calendar. And what Biden did, I think, was ridiculous,” he added.


The proclamation sparked public outcry with an outpouring of criticism among conservatives and the GOP, including from the Trump campaign, which also opposed the White House’s instructions for an Easter egg art design competition for children. These instructions banned submissions that included “religious symbols” or “overtly religious themes.”

“It is appalling and insulting that Joe Biden’s White House prohibited children from submitting religious egg designs for their Easter Art Event and formally proclaimed Easter Sunday as ‘Trans Day of Visibility,” Trump campaign spokeswoman Karoline Leavitt said in a statement. “We call on Joe Biden’s failing campaign and White House to issue an apology to the millions of Catholics and Christians across America who believe tomorrow is for one celebration only, the resurrection of Jesus Christ.”

House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) also condemned the proclamation, calling it “outrageous.”

“The Biden White House has betrayed the central tenet of Easter, which is the resurrection of Jesus Christ,” Mr. Johnson wrote on March 31 on X. “Banning sacred truth and tradition—while at the same time proclaiming Easter Sunday as ‘Transgender Day’—is outrageous and abhorrent. The American people are taking note.”

In response to Mr. Johnson’s criticism of the proclamation, President Biden said that “he’s thoroughly uninformed.”

Mr. Johnson replied on social media platform X with a screenshot of the president’s proclamation, pointing out a highlighted part of the declaration. Mr. Johnson then asked, “This is you, Joe Biden?”

Meanwhile, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre pushed back against the negative criticism, calling it “dishonest” and “hateful.”

“On March 31, Transgender Day of Visibility is marked. And as we know—for folks who understand the calendar and how it works—Easter falls on different Sundays every year. And this year, it happened to coincide with Transgender Visibility Day. And so that is the simple fact,” she said.

According to last year’s Pew Research Center survey, about 1.6 percent of U.S. adults identified themselves as transgender or nonbinary. Young adults are more likely than older adults to identify as transgender or nonbinary. Among adults under 30, 5.1 percent said they are transgender or nonbinary, including 2 percent as transgender men or transgender women and 3 percent as nonbinary.

Another survey by the Pew Research Center found that a growing share of Americans say that a person’s gender should be determined by their sex at birth. Sixty percent said so in 2022, compared with 56 percent in 2021 and 54 percent in 2017.

Tom Ozimek and Emel Akan contributed to this report.

From The Epoch Times

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