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Trump slams D.C. officials for parade's 'ridiculous' $92M price tag

By Ed Adamczyk
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President Donald Trump listens during a Cabinet Meeting Thursday in the Cabinet Room of the White House. Photo by Oliver Contreras/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/b1e1ec478e8e891f746fc2f0e53f4fbf/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
President Donald Trump listens during a Cabinet Meeting Thursday in the Cabinet Room of the White House. Photo by Oliver Contreras/UPI | License Photo

Aug. 17 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump said Friday he canceled his long-wanted military parade in Washington, D.C., because of its "ridiculous" $92 million price tag.

The Pentagon, which offered the price estimate, postponed the parade on Thursday to an undetermined date in 2019. Friday, Trump explained the reason.

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"Maybe we will do something next year in D.C. when the cost comes WAY DOWN," he wrote.

The cost is considerably higher than the $10-$30 million originally estimated by White House budget director Mick Mulvaney, which was based on the cost of a 1991 Gulf War victory parade in Washington. That parade cost about $8 million.

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After adjusting for inflation and factoring in security, transportation and other expenses, estimated costs ballooned to $92 million -- considered the uppermost estimate. About $50 million would have come from the Defense Department and $42 million the Department of Homeland Security.

The parade was meant as a tribute to service members and would have coincided with Veterans Day, and the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.

"The Department of Defense and White House have been planning a parade to honor America's military veterans and commemorate the centennial of World War I," Defense Department spokesman Col. Rob Manning said in a statement. "We originally targeted November 10, 2018, for this event but have now agreed to explore opportunities in 2019."

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Some have criticized the parade as excessive.

"There is only one person who wants this parade," a senior U.S. official told NBC News, referring to Trump.

In two tweets Friday, Trump suggested that he would attend a celebration in Paris on the weekend in November the parade was set for.

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"The local politicians who run Washington, D.C. (poorly) know a windfall when they see it. When asked to give us a price for holding a great celebratory military parade, they wanted a number so ridiculously high that I cancelled it. Never let someone hold you up!" he wrote.

"I will instead attend the big parade already scheduled at Andrews Air Force Base on a different date, & go to the Paris parade, celebrating the end of the War, on November 11th. Maybe we will do something next year in D.C. when the cost comes WAY DOWN. Now we can buy some more jet fighters!"

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