MIAMI – President Donald Trump kicked off 2018 by engaging in his favorite pastimes – golf and making Twitter postings – after hosting a gala New Year’s Eve bash at his exclusive South Florida club and resort, Mar-a-Lago.
Shortly after 9:00 am Monday and after bidding farewell to 2017 with a party lasting until the wee hours, the president headed for the Trump International Golf Club, where he was accompanied in a round of golf by world champion Fred Funk and his son Taylor, White House spokespeople said.
Before hitting the links on – according to NBC News – the 91st day of his presidency that he has spent at the golf club, Trump took to Twitter, where he devoted his first tweet of 2018 to criticizing Pakistan for what he called its “lies & deceit” and for giving “safe haven to ... terrorists.”
“The United States has foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and they have given us nothing but lies & deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools,” tweeted Trump.
“They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!” he added.
According to the presidential agenda prepared by the White House, Trump is scheduled to return to Washington on board Air Force One on Monday afternoon, the presidential aircraft waiting on the tarmac at Palm Beach International Airport beside a jet bearing the Trump logo, as reported by journalists accompanying him.
The president confirmed that he would return to the nation’s capital on Monday, tweeting “Will be leaving Florida for Washington (D.C.) today at 4:00 P.M. Much work to be done, but it will be a great New Year!”
On Sunday, the president was on Twitter sending out his New Year’s greetings and emphasizing that he and his team “are MAKING AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, and much faster than anyone thought possible!” while in another tweet he posted a video lasting more than three minutes showing images of his first year as president.
“As our Country rapidly grows stronger and smarter, I want to wish all of my friends, supporters, enemies, haters, and even the very dishonest Fake News Media, a Happy and Healthy New Year. 2018 will be a great year for America!” Trump wrote on Dec. 31 shortly before attending the gala at Mar-a-Lago.
Trump – wearing a tuxedo – was accompanied at the evening bash by first lady Melania Trump, elegantly attired in a long pink gold dress with floral accents, as well as their son Barron, also wearing a tuxedo.
Trump briefly touched on several points to reporters before the party began, emphasizing his belief that the stock market will continue rising and US firms will continue returning to this country from abroad.
He also emphasized the tax reform package passed by the Republican-controlled Congress, the opening of the National Wildlife Refuge to oil exploitation and the elimination of the individual mandate in former President Barack Obama’s health care reform, known as Obamacare.
On hand for the New Year’s Eve party were Trump’s daughter and son-in-law Ivanka and Jared Kushner, as well as Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and his wife Louise Linton, former baseball star Keith Hernandez and Fox News anchor Lou Dobbs, among others.
The dinner menu at the gala included Maine lobster ravioli, sliced tenderloin and pan-seared sea bass.