Trump made an unannounced visit to the Martin Luther King Jr. memorial to honor the civil rights icon

  • President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence visited the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington DC on Monday just after 11 a.m.
  • The pair placed a wreath at the foot of the statue during their brief visit, which only lasted a couple of minutes. 
  • Trump reportedly did not answer reporter questions about the government shutdown during the visit. 

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence made an unannounced visit to the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C. on Monday in recognition of the holiday honoring the civil rights leader.

Trump and Pence placed a wreath at the memorial during their brief visit, which occurred just after 11 a.m.

"It's a great day. A beautiful day. Thank you for being here. Appreciate it,"  Trump told reporters at the memorial, according to CNN.

He and Pence stood by the statue for only a minute or two, Reuters White House correspondent Jeff Mason said on Twitter.

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Donald Trump and Mike Pence visit Martin Luther King Jr. memorial
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Donald Trump and Mike Pence visit Martin Luther King Jr. memorial
U.S. President Donald Trump, center, and Vice President Mike Pence, left, arrive at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. Trump and senior Democrats took their first steps toward a possible compromise deal on immigration and border security over the weekend, even as the president ramped up his feud with Speaker Nancy Pelosi with the government shutdown in its fifth week. Photographer: Pete Marovich/Pool via Bloomberg
U.S. President Donald Trump, right, and Vice President Mike Pence visit the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. Trump and senior Democrats took their first steps toward a possible compromise deal on immigration and border security over the weekend, even as the president ramped up his feud with Speaker Nancy Pelosi with the government shutdown in its fifth week. Photographer: Pete Marovich/Pool via Bloomberg
U.S. President Donald Trump, center, and Vice President Mike Pence, left, visit the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. Trump and senior Democrats took their first steps toward a possible compromise deal on immigration and border security over the weekend, even as the president ramped up his feud with Speaker Nancy Pelosi with the government shutdown in its fifth week. Photographer: Pete Marovich/Pool via Bloomberg
U.S. President Donald Trump, right, and Vice President Mike Pence arrive at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. Trump and senior Democrats took their first steps toward a possible compromise deal on immigration and border security over the weekend, even as the president ramped up his feud with Speaker Nancy Pelosi with the government shutdown in its fifth week. Photographer: Pete Marovich/Pool via Bloomberg
U.S. President Donald Trump, center, and Vice President Mike Pence, left, visit the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. Trump and senior Democrats took their first steps toward a possible compromise deal on immigration and border security over the weekend, even as the president ramped up his feud with Speaker Nancy Pelosi with the government shutdown in its fifth week. Photographer: Pete Marovich/Pool via Bloomberg
U.S. President Donald Trump and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence depart after placing a wreath at the Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington, U.S., January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. President Donald Trump and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence depart after placing a wreath at the Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington, U.S., January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. President Donald Trump and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence arrive to place a wreath at the Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington, U.S., January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. President Donald Trump and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence pause after placing a wreath at the Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington, U.S., January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks as U.S. Vice President Mike Pence watches after placing a wreath at the Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington, U.S., January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. President Donald Trump and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence pause after placing a wreath at the Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington, U.S., January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
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The visit was unexpected because as of Sunday night the White House reported that Trump's public schedule for MLK Day was empty.

Last year, Trump spent Martin Luther King Jr. Day golfing at the Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Read more:2020 Democrats rejected Trump's latest 'compromise' to end the shutdown — here's what they had to say

Earlier on Monday Trump posted a statement about Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Twitter.

"Today we celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. for standing up for the self-evident truth Americans hold so dear, that no matter what the color of our skin or the place of our birth, we are all created equal by God," he said, linking to a longer statement on the White House's website.

The MLK Jr. Memorial in Washington is overseen by the National Park Service, which has been left unfunded during the 31-day government shutdown.

Trump did not respond to questions about the shutdown during the short visit to the memorial, according to the Associated Press.

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