President Trump’s first public comment on the Nunes memo came Saturday morning in a tweet he posted en route to his golf course in West Palm Beach: “This memo totally vindicates “Trump” in probe.”
In the tweet, the president again described the special counsel’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election as a “witch hunt,” adding there was “no Collusion” between his campaign and Russian officials and “no Obstruction” of the investigation. “This is an American disgrace!” In another tweet posted on his way to the club, Trump hailed a new poll that he said showed he had a 49 percent approval rating and blamed the media for failing to write about it.
The president then spent five hours at his golf club before returning to Mar-a-Lago mid-afternoon. The president, first lady and their 11-year-old son, Barron, arrived at Palm Beach International Airport about 7 p.m. on Friday.
Saturday evening, he continued to tweet about the FBI after complaining that “nobody even talks about” the “great jobs numbers” and “rising wages.”
He shared part of a Wall Street Journal op-ed piece in which the editorial board criticized the FBI over allegations in the memo released this week.
“The four page memo released Friday reports the disturbing fact about how the FBI and FISA appear to have been used to influence the 2016 election and its aftermath....The FBI failed to inform the FISA court that the Clinton campaign had funded the dossier....the FBI became....— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 4, 2018
...a tool of anti-Trump political actors. This is unacceptable in a democracy and ought to alarm anyone who wants the FBI to be a nonpartisan enforcer of the law....The FBI wasn’t straight with Congress, as it hid most of these facts from investigators.” Wall Street Journal— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 4, 2018
Saturday would have been the annual Red Cross Ball at Mar-a-Lago — one of the most prestigious fundraisers of the social season, perennially attended by diplomats, philanthropists and women in tiaras. The Red Cross cancelled the event after the president’s controversial comments about deadly violence at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., last year, where an Ohio man linked to white supremacist groups plowed his car into a crowd, killing a 32-year-old woman.
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Backlash was swift after the president blamed “both sides” for the violence. More than 20 charities cancelled their fundraisers at Mar-a-Lago in protest. The Red Cross Ball was the most notable. Marjorie Merriweather Post, the cereal heiress who built Mar-a-Lago with her husband, banker Edward Francis Hutton, first held the event at Mar-a-Lago in 1957. Last year, just two weeks after his inauguration, the president and first lady attended the event.
Among the few remaining big-ticket events at Mar-a-Lago this season was a campaign fundraiser and inauguration party for the president on Jan. 20. The $100,000-per-couple ticket included a photo opportunity with the president. However, the president cancelled the visit amidst the government shutdown. A do-over has been scheduled at Mar-a-Lago on March 3. Ticket prices have dropped.
According to an invitation first flagged by FloridaPolitics.com, those who contribute $2,700 get to attend a reception; those who raise $25,000 (in increments not to exceed $5,400) get two seats for a dinner with Trump; and $50,000 bundlers get two dinner tickets and a photo. The fundraiser coincides with the RNC’s annual spring retreat, with 200 to 300 major GOP donors expected to visit an undisclosed location in Palm Beach.
On Sunday, the president will likely return to his West Palm Beach golf course for more golf and his annual Super Bowl party. Last year, the president left the party during the third-quarter, missing the New England Patriot’s epic comeback. This year he will also miss the end of the game. FAA alerts to pilots indicate Air Force One will leave Palm Beach International Airport around 9:30 p.m.