Ramaswamy Slams Juneteenth As Useless Holiday

Over the weekend, 2024 presidential contender Vivek Ramaswamy made the case to Republican primary voters in Iowa that Juneteenth is “useless” and should be scrapped.

The conservative businessman suggested while outlining his plan for the future of voting in the United States, which includes eliminating absentee and mail-in votes in favor of in-person voting.

“Cancel Juneteenth or one of the other useless ones we made up,” Ramaswamy urged.

The presidential hopeful made the salient remark that we can’t have everything be a holiday, but we should cancel one of the other ones and make election day a holiday.

While fewer than 1% of voters supported him in March, 6.7% did so as of August 3; it puts him ahead of former VP Mike Pence, former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, and Republican South Carolina Senator Tim Scott.

When NBC News asked Ramaswamy to elaborate on his comments, he noted that other holidays already celebrate the ideals of Juneteenth, such as Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Presidents’ Day.

He said Juneteenth was officially recognized as a holiday only because of “political duress” after public rallies after George Floyd died in 2020.

We don’t need many holidays that commemorate the same thing. Ramaswamy remarked that we should not create holidays with a cultural gun to our heads, and that’s what happened with Juneteenth.

Ramaswamy, who less than two months ago welcomed Juneteenth on Twitter as “a celebration of the American dream,” seems to have reversed course with his views about the anniversary on Saturday.

“The progress we’ve made is cause for celebration,” Ramaswamy reflected at the time.

He added that he doesn’t hide his pride as a first-generation American. He wished everyone a wonderful Juneteenth celebration.

Ramaswamy, an anti-woke activist, is in third place behind former President Donald Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, according to an aggregation of Republican primary polling by FiveThirtyEight.