On Friday, Dec. 21 — unless Congress passes a budget or continuing resolution — the government shuts down when it runs out of money, and hundreds of thousands of employees would be furloughed or asked to work without guarantee of pay. President Trump said he would be proud to own the blame if the government shuts down.
That isn’t stopping him from looking at a holiday vacation in sunny Florida.
According to an alert posted by the Federal Aviation Administration, and first reported by the Palm Beach Post, “there will be a VIP Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) in the West Palm Beach, Florida region” from Dec. 21 to Jan. 6. This means that pilots will be warned away from the airspace near Mar-a-Lago, the Trump resort in West Palm Beach that Trump uses as a winter retreat. The FAA did not say which days Air Force One would take off or land at nearby Palm Beach Airport.
If Trump were to leave Washington on Dec. 21, the first day of the flight alert, and if the impasse over border wall funding Trump created and said he was proud to own is not resolved by then, he would leave just as the government was shutting down. Elaina Plott, a White House correspondent for the Atlantic, reported that “there is a hold on Trump’s travel calendar” during this period.
Trump could delay his departure if there is a shutdown, but the White House did not respond to requests for comment on the president’s holiday plans amid the shutdown.
Trump has adjusted his schedule in the past. In January of this year, there was another government shutdown over a DACA extension policy, and the night before Trump had been scheduled to leave for Mar-a-Lago to attend a self-congratulatory gala the following day. He had to cancel his plans and send members of his family in his place.
Last year, Trump stayed at his Florida resort for 12 days, so if he is there for the whole time period blocked out by the FAA, he will have a vacation four days longer than before.