Though routinely mocked and dismissed by Democrats and the media, President Donald Trump has long insisted that the politically correct left has been waging a “war on Christmas” that he simply will not tolerate.
In line with Trump’s staunch defense of the Christmas holiday, he signed an executive order Friday that designates Christmas Eve a paid holiday and day off for federal employees, the Washington Examiner reported.
Based on the title and wording of the executive order, however, it appears the holiday designation for Christmas Eve is only applicable this year.
The executive order from the president declared, “All executive departments and agencies of the Federal Government shall be closed and their employees excused from duty on Thursday, December 24, 2020, the day before Christmas Day.”
“The heads of executive departments and agencies may determine that certain offices and installations of their organizations, or parts thereof, must remain open and that certain employees must report for duty on December 24, 2020, for reasons of national security, defense, or other public need,” the order continued, obviously recognizing the need for certain “essential” employees to continue working.
Nevertheless, the order referred to other executive orders and statutes for direction on how this year’s Christmas Eve should be considered a paid federal holiday for the vast majority of the federal workforce, and directed that the “Director of the Office of Personnel Management shall take such actions as may be necessary to implement this order.”
Not the first time
The Government Executive website reported that prior to the issuance of the order, federal employees were hopeful that they would receive a half-day off on Christmas Eve, as has been done in years past when Christmas fell on a Friday.
That happened in 2009 and 2015 under former President Barack Obama, as well as in 1998 during former President Bill Clinton’s tenure in office.
The website noted that this also isn’t the first time Trump has granted Christmas Eve as a day off for the government’s workforce. In 2019, Trump declared Christmas Eve a federal day off even though it fell on a Tuesday, and made it a full day off in 2018 when it fell on a Monday so that workers could enjoy a four-day weekend.
“War on Christmas”
The New York Post reported on Trump’s executive order and took note of remarks he made days earlier on Saturday during a rally in Georgia ahead of the special Senate runoff races. During the rally, he briefly discussed the left’s perpetual “war on Christmas” — in reality, against Christian values and American traditions.
“Let me begin by wishing you all a very Merry Christmas. Remember the word?” Trump said to the crowd of supporters.
“Remember? We started five years ago, and I said, ‘You’re gonna be saying ‘Christmas’ again,'” he continued. “We say it proudly again. Although they’ll be trying to take that word again out of the vocabulary.”