For the first time in over two decades, the White House did not host an Iftar or Eid celebration dinner to mark the month of Ramadan, the Muslim holiday in which believers fast during the day.
Hosting an Eid celebration or Iftar dinner has been a White House tradition since 1966, when the then-first lady Hillary Clinton hosted the first Eid dinner.
Iftar dinners usually involve the White House inviting prominent members of the Muslim community to break their fast at the White House. The tradition has been observed by both Barack Obama and George Bush, with Donald Trump being the first to break tradition.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson also broke with tradition by not hosting an Iftar dinner at the State Department during Ramadan, as has happened for the past two decades.
Last year during the campaign trail the-then Presidential candidate Donald Trump told ABC News’ Jonathan Karl, that he would not be opposed to the tradition and would be open to continuing it.
“It wouldn’t bother me. It wouldn’t bother me,” Trump said last June. “It’s not something I’ve given a lot of thought to but it wouldn’t bother me.”
The President was aware of the celebration as he and the first lady issued a statement in which he recognised
the Eid al-Fitr holiday that marks the end of Ramadan.
“On behalf of the American people, Melania and I send our warm greetings to Muslims as they celebrate Eid al-Fitr,” the statement reads. “During this holiday, we are reminded of the importance of mercy, compassion, and goodwill. With Muslims around the world, the United States renews our commitment to honor these values.”
The White House recently hosted Passover Seder in April, however, neither the President or