President Donald Trump played golf for the fourth time during his Mar-a-Lago stay as his schedule read he was working ‘tirelessly for the American people.’
The president arrived at his golf club Monday morning for time on the links after caving in and signing a $900 billion legislative package that funds the government and provides COVID relief to those suffering during the pandemic. He left after about four and half hours at his club.
He’s visited his Trump International Golf Course in West Palm Beach for four out of the five days he’s been in Florida.
The Florida weather was perfect for 18 holes – in the 60s with partly cloudy skies and a light breeze – and Trump has taken advantage of his holiday stay at the Winter White House to spend time at his favorite recreational activity.
President Donald Trump in a golf cart on his West Pal Beach golf course on Monday
President Trump playing golf for the fourth time since he arrived in Florida
President Trump gives a double thumbs up to supporters as he returns to Mar-a-Lago after his golf game
President Donald Trump heads to his West Palm Beach golf course on Monday morning, staring at his phone while in his motorcade
President Trump’s motorcade makes its way to his golf course
President Trump’s public schedule for Monday
Trump’s public schedule has no events listed but includes a note that: ‘During the Holiday season, President Trump will continue to work tirelessly for the American People. His schedule includes many meetings and calls.’
His schedule has had the addendum on it since Thursday, his first full day in Florida where he’s spending the holiday season with his family.
The White House has not released details on what kind of meetings and calls the president had taken part of.
The president is not the only member of his administration on holiday – Vice President Mike Pence is in Vail, Colorado, and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is at a resort in Cabo, Mexico.
Trump’s golf game on Monday comes after the president folded and signed the COVID relief/government funding bill he threatened to veto – getting nothing in return for the chaos he threatened.
In a statement accompanying the signing announcement, Trump said he was returning the bill to Congress with red lines through the spending he wanted cut. Additionally, he claimed the Senate would increase the amount of the stimulus checks to $2,000, review repealing Section 230 that protects tech companies from blanket lawsuits, and probe vote fraud.
Lawmakers have signaled none of these things will come to pass.
Trump’s spending objects contain items his own administration requested in its budget proposal. Congress adjourns its session on January 3, giving lawmakers little time to act on any of the demands, and Trump himself is a lame duck president who will be out of office in 23 days.
Trump spent Sunday afternoon on the phone with Mnuchin and House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy, Axios reported, who persuaded him to sign the legislation.
After Trump announced he’d signed the bill, the House Appropriations Committee chairwoman called the president’s proposed spending cuts dead on arrival.
A spokesperson for New York Representative Nita Lowey, whose committee holds the power of the federal purse, said Trump’s red-lined version of the sweeping aid and funding legislation is ‘DOA.’
President Trump on his golf Trump International Golf Course West Palm Beach on Sunday afternoon
President Trump’s schedule lists no public events but says he is working ‘tirelessly’ for the American people
The president also included a demand that while Congress cuts out what he calls unnecessary spending, they also up direct checks for Americans from the $600 already included in the bill to $2,000.
‘As President, I have told Congress that I want far less wasteful spending and more money going to the American people in the form of $2,000 checks per adult and $600 per child,’ he said in a statement announcing his signage Sunday evening.
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell released a statement applauding Trump’s signing legislation but made no mention of the three items Trump claimed he was getting the Senate to do.
‘I thank the President for signing this relief into law, along with full-year government funding legislation that will continue the rebuilding and modernization of our Armed Forces that his Administration has championed. His leadership has prevented a government shutdown at a time when our nation could not have afforded one,’ McConnell said.
‘I am glad the American people will receive this much-needed assistance as our nation continues battling this pandemic,’ he added.
The House meets on Monday to consider legislation that will expand the stimulus checks to $2,000. Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement Sunday night that the president should help persuade Republicans to support it.
The Senate is expected to be in session on Tuesday.
Trump threw lawmakers for a loop last week with his sudden demand for the amount of stimulus checks to be tripled and his blasting the bill – which contained several of his administration’s funding requests – as a ‘disgrace.’
The president largely sat on the sidelines while Mnuchin negotiated with Republicans and Democrats to come to a final agreement, which both chambers of Congress passed.
Trump’s balking at signing it resulted in 14 million Americans losing their unemployment benefits on Saturday night and there could be a delay in returning them now that the president has signed the measure.
Democrats blasted Trump for dragging out the process.
‘The President’s pointless delay in approving the relief legislation cost millions of Americans a week’s worth of pandemic-related unemployment assistance that they desperately need,’ said House Ways and Means Committee Chair Richard Neal, a Democrat of Massachusetts. ‘His stalling only intensified anxiety and hardship for workers and families who are collateral damage in his political games. Now, people will need to wait even longer for direct payments and other vital assistance to arrive.’