Donald Trump is a tough nut to crack.
As he left Washington D.C. for the last time on Wednesday -- skipping Joe Biden’s inaugural in the ultimate snub -- he pledged that ‘we will be back - in some form.’
For now, he is headed for his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, which will be his permanent home.
Trump has reportedly discussed forming a new political outfit called the Patriot Party after telling supporters the ‘‘movement we started is just beginning.’’ It is not known how serious he is about going ahead with the idea. But his vow to stay a force in politics could cause some Republicans to squirm, writes the Daily Mail. Trump divided Republicans among those who supported his isolationist agenda and those who disliked his harsh rhetoric. Many Republicans want to see the outgoing president fade quietly away but others fear his supporters could be an influence in the party's primaries for years to come, the Mail adds.
‘‘Have a good life,’’ he told a crowd of a few hundred supporters at Joint Base Andrews, after listing his ‘achievements’ in a speech which began after a 21-gun salute. In the front row, Ivanka Trump sobbed, while behind them the maskless crowd chanted ‘thank you Trump,’ before the first family climbed the stairs to Air Force One for the final time.
In his last hours, Trump granted clemency to more than 140 people, including his former adviser Steve Bannon, who is facing fraud charges.
Trump, who has not even once referred to his successor Joe Biden by name, despite belatedly accepting his accession, however, did not abandon one tradition. He has left Biden a note containing good wishes, the BBC reported, citing a White House spokesman. The contents were not known.
Trump, known for his unpredictable leadership style, divisive rhetoric targeting both allies and opponents, and the only US president to be impeached twice, has left a tainted legacy never seen before in American political history. It is no less his legacy that more than 25,000 troops were guarding the Capitol Hill in Washington DC for the oath taking ceremony of Biden, which is in many ways symptomatic of the decline of the American empire. It needs to be noted that till four years ago, the US took pride in its democracy and despite assaults like 9/11, it did not feel threatened.
"It was an honour of a lifetime," Trump said before departing from the White House. He said he just wanted to walk over and say "goodbye" and it will "not hopefully be a long goodbye". The words could indeed prove prophetic: there is already speculation that he might soon announce his 2024 re-election bid.
‘‘We love you,’’ the supporters yelled as Trump took the stage as his children watched on proudly. ‘‘We accomplished a lot,’’ Trump said. ‘‘We worked hard. We left it all - as the athletes would say - we left it in the field.’’