Obama Downplays Talk of His Own National Holiday

Obama speaks on MLK day

President Obama speaks in front of a giant American flag-draped statue of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., commemorating the civil rights leader with an historic speech about King’s role in the Obama legacy.

(2014-01-20) — In a holiday ceremony to commemorate the life of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., President Obama spoke of the “fairly significant role” Dr. King played in the run up to his own historic presidency, but humbly downplayed potential talk of an Obama national holiday.

“Dr. King had a dream,” Obama told the countless dozens of spectators in attendance. “Many think that dream was fulfilled at my swearing-in ceremony. Others believe my reelection was the zenith of the civil rights movement. Debating that question is above my pay grade, but I do think it’s too early to pick a specific date for the Barack Obama national holiday.”

Nevertheless, Obama noted in passing that his August 4th birthday “falls nicely between Independence Day and Labor Day.”

In a prepared speech, delivered from a temporary platform a few feet above the head of the King statue near the National Mall, Obama also counseled “watchful patience” with the slow pace of work at the National Park Service in planning the Obama head on Mt. Rushmore.

“It may be a simple matter of geological engineering challenges,” Obama said, “but we can’t rule out that it’s part of the ongoing struggle for which Dr. King gave his life. Do not fear. We shall overcome.”

After the ceremony, the Park Service said it had already begun to bronze the platform to commemorate the historic Obama speech.

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