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White House and Pentagon won't disclose cost of Trump's July 4th event

As America prepares to celebrate Independence Day, President Trump is facing pushback over his "Salute to America" celebration in Washington D.C. The president is promising pomp and circumstance: the largest-ever fireworks on the Mall, fighter jet flyovers, and performances by military bands -- but neither the White House nor the Pentagon will disclose how much the event will cost, sparking criticism from Democrats.   

The flyovers alone cost tens of thousands of dollars an hour -- and D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser is still waiting on $7.3 million from the Trump administration for inauguration costs. "If we have extraordinary police cost, for example, we will seek that reimbursement from the federal government," Bowser said on MSNBC.

The president defended the event on Twitter, writing "the cost of our great Salute to America ...will be very little compared to what it is worth." He went on to say that "we own the planes, we have the pilots...all we need is the fuel." But that is fuel and flying hours that would have otherwise been spent solely on training.

CBS News has confirmed the Pentagon has been giving out printed instructions about what to say -- and not to say -- when speaking to the media. One suggested message: "I am proud of my job and my vehicle or tank."

The White House is reportedly having trouble giving away tickets to the event because it was scheduled so late. Multiple inquiries to the RNC about how many VIP tickets they received from the White House and just how many of them went to top donors went unanswered, fueling criticism from the campaign trail as Democrats slammed the president for turning the nation's birthday into a politicized campaign event.

"I think the president needs to understand this is America's birthday, not his," said California Sen. Kamala Harris.

"I believe in this country," said South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, "and we're way bigger than our president is making us look at a time like this."  

Although the forecast for D.C. shows rain a good chance of thunderstorms, the Interior Department tells us the festivities will continue rain or shine.

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