When will Americans get to say “trick or treat” again?
With still two weeks left before Halloween and more than five weeks until Thanksgiving, Donald Trump abandoned both holidays and skipped ahead to Christmas. During a speech on taxes on Tuesday evening, the president took a holiday detour.
With just 68 shopping days left until the big day, Trump said, “Let’s give our country the best Christmas present of all: massive tax cuts.”
It wasn’t just a single, off-handed reference. He then launched into a Yuletide aside:
“And speaking of Christmas... yes? You want to hear it? Speaking ― I’m just talking about Christmas presents, I’ll give you a bigger Christmas present, you’re going to be saying ‘Merry Christmas’ again, OK? You’re going to say ‘Merry Christmas.’
You know, you go to the stores, and they have the red walls and they have the snow and they even have the sleigh, and the whole thing. They don’t have ‘Merry Christmas.’ They don’t have ‘Merry Christmas.’
I want them to say: ‘Merry Christmas, everybody.’ Happy New Year, Happy holidays, but I want ‘Merry Christmas.’ We’re going to say it again. It’s happening already.”
If it’s “happening already,” it may be because Trump uses the phrase in just about every season. He mentioned saying “Merry Christmas” on Friday while speaking at an anti-LGBT event. He mentioned it on July 1 at an event ahead of Independence Day. Trump also made it a recurring talking point during the 2016 presidential campaign, vowing, “We’re going to be saying Merry Christmas again.” Trump even used the phrase multiple times during a Jan. 18, 2016 speech at Liberty University (a.k.a. the “Two Corinthians” speech).
While the president has rarely mentioned Halloween, he’s had no problem capitalizing on it. Trump just released an orange, Halloween-themed version of his MAGA hat, with a jack-o-lantern on the front and the slogan “Make America Great Again” on the back.