WASHINGTON – Donald Trump spent his final minutes as president at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida – and also suggested he will seek to remain in political life.
“We will be back in some form,” Trump told supporters during an early farewell ceremony at Joint Base Andrews that featured a 21-gun salute and a military band playing “Hail to the Chief.”
“Have a good life,” he added. “We will see you soon.”
In a nine-minute speech on an incredible four years. Trump recounted highlights that included the creation of the Space Force, veterans benefits, de-regulation, and tax cuts.
The outgoing president did not mention his two impeachments, nor the more than 400,000 Americans who have died of COVID-19. He did warn supporters to “be careful” in the face of the “horrible virus.”
Trump, the first president in more than 150 years to skip his successor’s inauguration, did not cite President Joe Biden by name. But did joke: “I hope they don’t raise your taxes, but if they do, I told you so.” He also wished the new administration “great luck and great success”. And the White House said he left a note of encouragement to Biden at the White House.
Air Force One took off from Andrews at 9 a.m. as the PA system played Frank Sinatra’s “My Way.” Meanwhile, Biden and members of Congress attended a church service in downtown Washington.
Trump traveled to Palm Beach on Wednesday morning with all the powers of the presidency, including possession of the military “football” with the nuclear codes. That piece of equipment was turned off at noon, along with all the other duties of the presidency.