Ever since the Philadelphia Eagles won the Super Bowl, many people reported that members of the team were not interested in visiting President Donald Trump in the White House. But as the team debated how to handle the situation, Trump took action into his own hands.
The White House announced that President Trump rescinded his invitation for the Eagles to visit the White House. In the statement, the White House said the president felt that not sending the whole team would be a disservice to fans in attendance. Here's the main part of the statement:
"The Philadelphia Eagles are unable to come to the White House with their full team to be celebrated tomorrow. They disagree with their President because he insists that they proudly stand for the National Anthem, hand on heart, in honor of the great men and women of our military and the people of our country. The Eagles wanted to send a smaller delegation, but the 1,000 fans planning to attend the event deserve better."
Of course, other championship teams have also not sent full teams to the White House as well. Several members of the New England Patriots did not visit Trump last year after they won the Super Bowl, and earlier this year the NBA champion Golden State Warriors were considering not attending as well. (Trump ended up disinviting the Warriors as well, but only after reports said they weren't going to attend.)
Trump is no stranger to using sports as an issue to divide Americans. He's used the controversy over NFL players kneeling during the National Anthem as a way to promote his agenda and claim that anyone protesting the anthem is un-American.
Only Trump could make a simple photo op into a major national issue.