Mitch Landrieu to attend White House meeting
New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu will attend the working session with President Donald Trump and some of the nation’s mayors at the White House on Wednesday, a Landrieu aide tells CNN.
The White House has not responded to questions about who else is attending.
Landrieu, whose term in New Orleans ends later this year, has been an outspoken critic of Trump, particularly on the way that he describes cities and his comments about Confederate monuments. Landrieu is among the Democrats rumored to be eying a presidential run in 2020.
A number of the nation’s top mayors are in Washington this week for the US Conference of Mayors Winter Session. Landrieu is the president of the conference.
The meeting between Trump and the nation’s mayors could prove contentious, given it will likely bring a number of outspoken Trump critics into the White House.
Before Trump was inaugurated, Landrieu — who endorsed Hillary Clinton for president — was critical of the then-Republican candidate, especially over Trump’s disparagement of American cities.
“Our cities are a source of American pride,” Landrieu wrote in an October 2016 post. “A candidate for President cannot make America prosperous if he doesn’t understand that America’s cities are, in fact, the backbone of the national economy.”
Landrieu, who has also knocked Trump for his immigration policies, gained national attention in 2017 when he delivered an impassioned speech calling for New Orleans’ Confederate monuments to be taken down.
“These statues are not just stone and metal,” Landrieu said during the May 2017 speech. “They are not just innocent remembrances of a benign history. These monuments purposefully celebrate a fictional, sanitized Confederacy; ignoring the death, ignoring the enslavement and the terror that it actually stood for.”
The speech put Landrieu directly at odds with Trump, who has slammed efforts to remove Confederate statues and infamously said there was blame on “both sides” in the deadly Charlottesville protests over Confederate monuments.
“Sad to see the history and culture of our great country being ripped apart with the removal of our beautiful statues and monuments,” Trump tweeted in August. “You can’t change history, but you can learn from it.”