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Did Obama Plan to Replace Thanksgiving With ‘Celebrate Immigrants Day’?

Claim

A White House task force urged U.S. President Barack Obama to issue an executive order to ban Thanksgiving and replace it with “Celebrate Immigrants Day.”

Rating

Not True

Reporting

Right-wing radio hosts Mark Levin and Joe Miller fanned the flames on a holiday-related conspiracy theory in early 2015 that, predictably, did not manifest in reality.

In interviews with both Levin and Miller, right-wing activist Susan Payne claimed that she “secretly participated in a conference call” with members of the White House Task Force on New Americans, which then-U.S. President Barack Obama created in November 2014.

“They said that once this was all finished, there should be another executive order that changes Thanksgiving to ‘Celebrate Immigrants Day,’ Payne claimed. “I was about ready to blow my top.”

According to a recap posted on Miller’s website attributed to an anonymous “News Editor”:

She explained that not only did members of the task force make it clear that their efforts are designed to provide as much money and benefits to illegals as possible, they were also trying to expand ways to induce illegals to come to the United States. With respect to those who receive executive amnesty, Ms. Payne said the focus was “navigate [the benefits], not assimilate.”

But the most shocking revelation was that members of the task force want to see Thanksgiving be changed by Obama’s executive order to “Celebrate Immigrants Day.” Ms. Payne said she was “stunned” by the “audacity” and “insidious nature” of the Obama’s administration.

However, Miller’s site did not mention that the administration’s executive orders on immigration the year prior made exactly no mention of “banning” the Thanksgiving holiday. Payne herself failed to identify anyone on the alleged conference call, let alone the person who made the “suggestion,” which she said was interpreted as a joke.

“They laughed and thought it was a good idea and thanked them for their suggestion,” she said. “To me, as an American, and as an American whose husband served in Vietnam, I’m offended by this stuff.”

Update November 25, 2020 3:17 p.m. PST: This article has been revamped and updated. You can review the original here.