Trump Has To Say Goodbye To This Mar-A-Lago Luxury
Donald Trump’s time in office ended in legal battles, political polarization, and an attempted insurrection at the Capitol Building. Now, as he settles into his post-presidency life in Mar-A-Lago, Trump has been pressured to give up the last remainders of his glory days.
TMZ has reported that his personal helipad is being removed from his Florida home. Building permits show that the demolition will be carried out by Pyramid Builders of Palm Beach, and the removal will allegedly cost Trump $15,000.
The helipad was first built in February 2017. Palm Beach doesn’t generally allow its residents to have helicopters or helipads in the city, but for his four years in the White House, Trump was allowed to bend the rules. Trump got around zoning laws by arguing that flying to Mar-A-Lago would be better for the town than if he constantly had to cause traffic on Southern Boulevard with his presidential transport, according to The Hill. The extravagant home feature was approved “for business relating solely to the office of the president,” per TMZ. Now that he won’t require the Marine One helicopter anymore, it has to go.
Despite fighting for the helipad’s construction, the president often preferred to drive to the resort so that he could wave at supporters from his car, according to The Independent. On top of that, town manager Kirk Blouin told the Palm Beach Daily News that they “never made a request to keep it.”
The helipad, however, is just the latest in a string of issues Trump has faced in Florida.
Palm Beach residents have opposed Trump living in Mar-A-Lago
The demolition of his helipad isn’t the only problem Donald Trump currently faces at his Florida home.
The former president moved back to Mar-A-Lago on the morning of Joe Biden’s inauguration, flying with Air Force One for the last time. As CNN reported, the town of Palm Beach undertook a legal review to see whether he could actually live there according to their zoning ordinances. In order to turn Mar-A-Lago into a members-only club in 1993, Trump had to agree to guidelines that ruled members could not stay for more than a week at a time, and that they could not visit more than three times a year.
Some locals argue that him living at the club would contradict the agreement. The town attorney John “Skip” Randolph, however, announced online that the regulations do not prohibit Trump from residing there, as long as he is a “bona fide employee of the property,” per The Independent. The town council will debate the matter further to decide whether he can live there or not.
Trump’s decision to make the club his permanent residence has also faced resistance from his neighbors, who don’t want to be associated with him and his political legacy. Many longtime Mar-A-Lago members have decided to cut any ties to Trump by leaving, according to CNN.
Losing his fight to live in the resort would derail Trump’s plans for his post-presidency life: he has already opened his “Office of the Former President” in Palm Beach, per CBS.
The debate over Donald Trump's legacy has already begun
As Trump lies low in Mar-A-Lago ahead of his upcoming impeachment trial, the debate over his legacy has already started. In an interview with Sean Hannity, Eric Trump claimed that “there’s never been a more beloved political figure in our country’s history” than his father, per Huffington Post. “They wanna tar and feather the man,” Eric complained about his father’s critics. “They know he did a great job for this nation… There are 75 million Americans who would follow him to the end of Earth.”
It’s true that over 74 million people voted for Donald Trump. However, Joe Biden won with more than 81 million voters, breaking the record previously set by Barack Obama. Trump’s approval ratings also undermine the idea of him as the most “beloved political figure” in U.S. history.
Trump left his presidency with the lowest approval ratings of his whole first term, according to Gallup. His overall average approval rating was 41%, the lowest of any presidency by at least 4 points. Despite achieving a 49% approval in early 2020, his personal best, Trump’s reaction to losing the election sent his numbers plummeting by the end of the year.
After leaving amid the chaos of an attempted insurrection, Trump hasn’t made any public appearances. While it’s true he does have some supporters, it seems Trump still has more than enough critics as he attempts to settle into life in Palm Beach and prepares for the legal battles he will face to call it home.
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