Trump president will not attend President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration later in the day, marking the first such snub in more than 150 years.
Trump and Melania emerged from the White House a little before 8:20 a.m. and strode across the South Lawn to board Marine One. Trump said, “It’s been a great honor, the honor of a lifetime.”
In a brief speech, Trump said it was his greatest honor and privilege to serve as president and that he will “be watching.”
“You are an amazing people,” he said. “This is a great, great country. I will always fight for you. I will be watching. I will be listening. And I will tell you the future of this country has never been better.”
Trump did not address Joe Biden by name, but said he wishes the new administration “great luck and great success.” “They have the foundation to do something very spectacular,” he said.
He closed by saying: “Goodbye, we love you. We will be back in some form. Have a good life. We will see you soon.”
President Trump’s final remarks from the White House. pic.twitter.com/gQhXfS9LC7
— Jeff Mason (@jeffmason1) January 20, 2021
Melania Trump also gave a brief speech before departing with her husband.
“Being your first lady was my greatest honor. Thank you for your love and your support. You will be in my thoughts and prayers. God bless you all. God bless your families and God bless this beautiful nation,” she said.
The Trumps then boarded Air Force One to head to Trump’s private Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida, where he will retire with a small group of former White House aides.
Everything, everything has a beginning and an end. Donald Trump last moment as President of the United States. pic.twitter.com/GBTPek3LIa
— Bashir Ahmad (@BashirAhmaad) January 20, 2021
Bon voyage! Watch the moment President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump left the White House for the last time pic.twitter.com/PNpSIvgQu2
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) January 20, 2021
This is the first time in more than a century that a sitting US president has rejected the tradition of attending his successor’s inauguration.
KanyiDaily recalls that Biden had reacted to the development saying Trump not attending the ceremony is “one of the few things he and I have ever agreed on.”
Meanwhile, Donald Trump has granted pardons to rappers, Lil Wayne and Kodak Black, as part of a last-minute ‘clemency tradition’ carried out by every president on their last day in office.
According to an official statement from the White House, Trump granted a full pardon to 73 people and commutations of sentences to another 70, early on Wednesday morning.