President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump hopped aboard Marine One for a final flight around Washington, D.C., as per tradition, as the couple left the White House for the last time.
The president had already announced he would not be attending the inauguration of his successor, Democrat Joe Biden, on Wednesday, but had a sendoff ceremony at Joint Base Andrews before the couple began their journey home to Mar-a-Lago in Florida.
Following the ceremony at Joint Base Andrews, the Trumps took off for a final flight aboard Air Force One as Frank Sinatra’s “My Way” dramatically played.
New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman noted that the plane “intentionally or not lifted up to the final strains of My Way.”
This was the slow departure of AF1, which intentionally or not lifted up to the final strains of My Way, a song that wad also a Giuliani favorite. pic.twitter.com/GA8VBA7B1D
— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) January 20, 2021
Ahead of the flight, the White House released video of Trump’s departure from the White House.
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) January 20, 2021
Marine One circled around the city with the president aboard for the final time.
Earlier this month, as the Democrat-controlled House moved to impeach him for a second time in an unprecedented move, after accusing him of ‘inciting’ the riot that rocked the U.S. Capitol Building Jan. 6, Trump announced via Twitter he would not be attending President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration.
The platform suspended him shortly afterward.
Prior to departing D.C., Trump gave a short speech in which he outlined some of his achievements during a term that was as tumultuous as it was remarkably accomplished.
Vice President Mike Pence, along with other key GOP allies including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), did not attend the event and will, however, attend Biden’s inaugural. Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, however, did go to the event.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) January 20, 2021
Describing his term as “an incredible” four years, Trump thanked members of his family as his daughter, Tiffany, shed some tears while she looked on, Sky News reported.
“As the athletes would say, we left it all on the field,” said the president. “It has been my greatest honor and privilege to have been your president.”
“What we’ve done has been amazing by any standard,” he said.
President Trump says he “will be back.”
His remarks today from Joint Base Andrews, on his way to Mar-a-Lago. pic.twitter.com/ZsVA1hgplc
— Sebastian Gorka DrG (@SebGorka) January 20, 2021
Trump then wished the incoming Biden administration “great luck and success,” while adding: “We will be back in some form.”
The president did issue a warning, of sorts, that the incoming administration is likely to roll back a number of policies that were demonstrably good for the country.
“You’re gonna see incredible numbers start coming in if everything is left alone. Be careful,” Trump said. “I hope they don’t raise your taxes, but if they do, I told you so.”
Biden is expected to issue a flurry of executive orders Wednesday afternoon reversing a number of Trump’s policies, including an immediate halt to construction of the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
The departing U.S. leader also mentioned the COVID-19 pandemic. “The first thing we have to do is pay our respects and our love to the incredible people and families who suffered so gravely from the China virus. It was a horrible thing that was put into the world,” he said. “We put it in a position like it’s never been before despite the worst plague to hit since, I guess you’d say 1917, over a hundred years ago.”
Trump praised Pence, Congress, and his family, adding that most “people have no idea how hard this family works.” He praised Americans as well.
“Have a good life, we’ll see you soon,” Trump said as he ended his speech before climbing aboard Air Force One en route to West Palm Beach.
Trump also reportedly left Biden a note in the Oval Office, which is also part of tradition.
Meanwhile, supporters of the president gathered along routes he is expected to travel on his way to his resort home.
I’m in West Palm Beach for Donald Trump’s final trip to Mar-Lago where he’ll go from President to South Florida resident. Supporters already beginning to line the route pic.twitter.com/PVOj0iMHbb
— Steven D'Souza (@cbcsteve) January 20, 2021
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