As President Donald Trump prepares to deliver his first address to a joint session of Congress Tuesday night, Democrats are gearing up to protest the new president by inviting a diverse group of guests impacted by Trump's most controversial policies.
Immigrants who have made important contributions to American society, the family members of victims of mass shootings and those dependent on the Affordable Care Act will be among the guests on hand for the high-profile speech, say Democrats.
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"I want, when the president is giving his address, to be looking up in the gallery and see the diversity that is America," said Rep Jim Langevin (D-RI). Langevin is leading the charge encouraging House Democrats "to invite guests who have, despite discrimination, made positive impacts on their communities."
And unlike Trump's inauguration last month when several dozen House Democrats boycotted, only one member, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), has plans to skip the speech. Waters told her Democratic colleagues Tuesday that she won't be in attendance out of concerns she would not be able to "contain enthusiasm."
Immigration is the dominant theme among the Democratic invitees who could all stand to lose if Trump follows through on signature campaigns promises like cracking down on undocumented immigrants, restricting travel to the U.S., and repealing the Affordable Care Act.
"Once he assumed the highest office in the land, his first order of business was to close our borders to immigrants and refugees, particularly those from Muslim-majority countries," Langevin, said in a statement. "Diversity makes our nation stronger, and I believe it should be celebrated."
The White House announced its own list of guests meant to highlight the importance of Trump's agenda. The family members of a victim killed by undocumented immigrants will be siting with First Lady Melania Trump.
Not all Democratic guests will be a direct rebuke of Trump, however. One of the most notable invitations was extended by Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) to former Labor Secretary Tom Perez, who recently defeated Ellison to become head of the Democratic National Committee.
Below is a list of some of the guests being brought by House Democrats to watch Trump's address: