The hastily planned day trip — which the city’s mayor urged Trump not to make — was executed with no advance public itinerary and without congressional and local politicians. Some had declined to accompany the president, and others were not invited.
Trump did not speak publicly during his brief trip, instead quietly paying tribute at Tree of Life synagogue by laying flowers for the 11 victims and visiting a hospital to see officers who were wounded in Saturday’s shooting. But Trump’s trip to the area so soon after the attack tore open political tensions in the largely Democratic city, as residents angered by Trump’s arrival protested even as the first couple tried to keep a low profile during the solemn, afternoon visit.
“The sense in the community is that they didn’t think this was a time for a political photo shoot,” said Rep. Mike Doyle (D), whose congressional district covers the Squirrel Hill neighborhood where the synagogue is located. “There are strong feelings in the community about him and the divisive nature of his rhetoric.”