President Donald Trump is expected to spend 16 days at Mar-a-Lago over the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, according to an alert issued by the Federal Aviation Administration this morning.
The alert warns pilots to avoid the airspace over Mar-a-Lago during the more than two-week time frame, from Dec. 21 to Jan. 6, but does not indicate when Air Force One will arrive or depart Palm Beach, Fla., International Airport.
The upcoming visit is longer than last year’s 12-day visit, putting Trump in Palm Beach a day earlier than his arrival last year and four days later than his Jan. 2 departure. It would be his longest retreat at Mar-a-Lago, dubbed the Southern White House, since the president’s inauguration in January 2017.
Trump’s extended stay means he will not be in Washington when the new Congress, including the Democratic majority in the U.S. House of Representatives, is sworn in on Jan. 3. That event will mark the end of the GOP’s eight-year grip on the House, although Republicans slightly increased their Senate majority in the 2018 midterm elections.
It also means the president’s new White House chief of staff may be named, or takeover, during the stretch of time Trump is at Mar-a-Lago.
A later departure means the president could also attend the Palm Beach Police Foundation’s Policeman’s ball, one of the few charities that remained loyal to Mar-a-Lago after more than two dozen groups canceled fundraisers last season in the wake of the president’s comments after a racially charged protest in Charlottesville, Va. That event is scheduled for Jan. 5.