Biden denies permit for ‘Rolling Thunder’ motorcycle rally to honor vets on Memorial Day

Congressional lawmakers are outraged after the Biden administration denied an event permit in Washington, D.C. for the “Rolling to Remember” motorcycle rally on Memorial Day which has been held for the last 32 years.

Better known as “Rolling Thunder,” the charity event is intended to honor America’s fallen heroes. The rally is a tradition in D.C. that brings together thousands of veterans and other patriots from all over the country to commemorate war veterans, including those missing in action and prisoners of war. The action comes as D.C. is beginning to open up after the coronavirus lockdown.

Organizers have waited almost a year for the Defense Department to issue the parking permit needed for the event. The Pentagon cited the pandemic for not issuing a permit to the group so they could gather in its parking lot. The Biden administration “refused to talk with event organizers” and “refused to respond to Congress about this topic,” Rep. Darrel Issa (R-CA) said in a statement this week.

A number of congressional members petitioned the Pentagon in April to approve the rally. The permit was originally given the green light in March but was rescinded this week with no explanation.

(Video Credit: Fox News)

American Veterans which hosts the annual event reportedly obtained the necessary permits from the Department of Transportation, the Department of the Interior, and a number of other agencies. Issa noted that the Pentagon’s ruling “leaves patriotic veterans without a safe alternative” to gather.

AMVETS is a congressionally-chartered veterans service that represents more than 20 million veterans and their families in the United States.

Issa charged the Biden administration with playing politics, given that Biden just hosted a rally in Georgia: “The Rolling to Remember event is no less safe,” Issa declared. “The only difference is the politics that are denying veterans the opportunity to honor their fallen comrades. If patriotic veterans are not welcome at the Pentagon, are they truly welcome anywhere in the Biden Administration?”

The Pentagon released a statement last week attempting to explain their actions:

“Unfortunately, the department has disapproved AMVETS permit request. The department took into careful consideration all aspects of AMVETS request, to include the current Health Protection Condition status on the Pentagon Reservation; substantial community transmission of COVID-19 in Arlington County, Virginia; number of Americans fully vaccinated across the nation; nature of this event with its decreased ability to maintain physical distance; and large crowds in one location for an extended period of time. This event draws national attention and participation; therefore the risk of exposure from participants from other communities extends well beyond the National Capital Region.”

 

“If COVID-19 conditions permit, the department would gladly consider supporting a future event request from AMVETS, potentially as soon as this Labor Day weekend,” the statement continued.

“The department looks forward to supporting future events with AMVETS, and as always, we appreciate AMVETS’ support of our veterans, their families, and their communities, including promoting better awareness of veterans’ issues, as well as AMVETS continued support for our missing-in-action service members,” the statement weakly concluded.

Rep. Brian Mast (R-FL) slammed the Biden administration for rescinding the Memorial Day permit: “Memorial Day traditions like Rolling to Remember have been granted permits by every administration, Democrat and Republican, for the past 30 years. The Biden Administration’s decision to end this Memorial Day tradition flies in the face of the freedoms that so many have died to protect,” he told Fox News.

“We are blessed beyond words to be citizens of the greatest country on Earth and only live free thanks to the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice. But sadly right now, in Joe Biden’s America, it is easier to cross the border illegally than it is to get a permit to pay our respects to our nation’s fallen heroes,” Mast noted.

The rally always takes place over the Memorial Day holiday weekend. It usually starts on Friday evening with the Blessing of the Bikes ceremony at the National Cathedral. Then a candlelight vigil at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial takes place to kick off the event to remember our fallen heroes.

The Biden administration has also canceled the 4th of July fireworks at Mt. Rushmore and is being sued by South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem.

There was widespread anger on social media concerning Biden’s Pentagon blocking the rally:

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