The U.S. Navy Blue Angels fly over the Lincoln Memorial at President Trump's Fourth of July event in 2019. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Trump's Fourth of July "Salute to America" event last year cost over $13 million, according to an estimate released Thursday by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), an independent agency watchdog.

Why it matters: Estimated costs for Independence Day events on the National Mall in 2016, 2017 and 2018 ranged between $6 million to $7 million, per GAO.

Catch up quick: GAO partially attributes the price tag to the Defense Department transporting battle tanks and fighter jets to the National Mall for the ceremony, as well as extra security made available for the president to attend in-person.

What they're saying: White House spokesperson Judd Deere told AP's Ellen Knickmeyer that the Fourth of July celebration "is not about politics," in response to congressional Democrats' criticisms of how much the holiday cost taxpayers.

  • “It’s about all Americans coming together to celebrate Independence Day, our great armed forces and their heroic sacrifices, which have preserved our freedoms for generations, and our amazing heritage,” Deere told AP.

Go deeper: Trump plans military flyover at Mount Rushmore on July 3 (Politico)

Go deeper

Trump to visit Kenosha amid anger over Jacob Blake shooting

President Trump visiting an emergency operation center in Orange, Texas, on Saturday. Photo: Roberto Schmidt/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump will visit Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Tuesday amid unrest over the Aug. 23 police shooting that left Jacob Blake paralyzed from the waist down, the White House confirmed.

Why it matters: Per AP, Trump's trip is "certain to exacerbate tensions in the city, where a crowd of about 1,000 demonstrators gathered outside a courthouse Saturday to denounce police violence." White House spokesperson Judd Deere told reporters the president would "survey damage from recent riots," AFP reports. Trump is touting his law and order credentials as he seeks re-election.

Go deeper: Trump and Biden ready to refight 1968

Stocks close down more than 3%

Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld via Getty Images

Stocks took a hit on Wednesday, with the S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrials Average and Nasdaq dropping more than 3% across the board.

Why it matters: The volatility is a break from the stock market grinding higher in the face of spiking coronavirus cases, a stalling economy and gridlocked negotiations over an additional stimulus package.