A top official for Boy Scouts of America apologized for President Trump’s “political rhetoric” during the speech he gave at the National Boy Scout Jamboree in West Virginia this week, saying an invitation for Trump to speak at the event was “in no way an endorsement of any person, party, or policies.”
“I want to extend my sincere apologies to those in our Scouting family who were offended by the political rhetoric that was inserted into the jamboree. That was never our intent,” Michael Surbaugh, chief scout executive, said in a statement Thursday.
Surbaugh’s announcement referred to political statements made by Trump during a speech that is generally meant to be an uplifting message to adolescent boys. Trump joked about firing Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price if the Senate failed to repeal Obamacare and also bashed the previous president for never speaking at the event.
Surbaugh said every president since 1937 has been invited to speak at the jamboree, and that Boy Scouts of America isn’t a political entity.
“It is in no way an endorsement of any person, party or policies. For years, people have called upon us to take a position on political issues, and we have steadfastly remained non-partisan and refused to comment on political matters. We sincerely regret that politics were inserted into the Scouting program,” he continued.
Not all attendees of the jamboree were offended by the president’s comments, as a “We love Trump” chant did break out during the event.
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