Former President Donald Trump touched down in Florida on Monday afternoon ahead of his history-making arraignment for allegedly illegally hoarding classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago estate and then lying to officials who tried to recover them.
The 76-year-old arrived at Miami International Airport just before 3 p.m. after flying down on his Trump-branded private jet from New Jersey.
Wearing a navy suit and red tie, Trump — who turns 77 on Wednesday — flashed a wave as he emerged from the plane and was whisked off in a motorcade.
“I HOPE THE ENTIRE COUNTRY IS WATCHING WHAT THE RADICAL LEFT ARE DOING TO AMERICA,” he raged in a slew of Truth Social posts prior to landing.
“WE ARE A NATION IN SERIOUS DECLINE, AND IT WILL ONLY GET WORSE.”
Ahead of his arrival in the Sunshine State, dozens of vocal Make America Great Again supporters had started gathering near Trump National Doral golf club, where he’s expected to stay overnight before his arraignment at Miami US District Court on Tuesday afternoon.
As he arrived at the club at 3:20 p.m. local time, Trump did not open his car window to greet his supporters.
The 45th president, who has professed his innocence and vowed to continue his 2024 White House campaign, is facing 37 felony counts — including 31 related to the willful retention of national defense information. The remaining charges include conspiracy to commit obstruction and false statements.
He is accused of taking thousands of papers containing sensitive national security secrets when he left the White House in January 2021 and stashing them in a haphazard manner at his Mar-a-Lago estate, according to the indictment, unsealed last week.
The documents he stored — including in a bathroom, ballroom, bedroom and shower — included material on nuclear programs, defense and weapons capabilities of the US and foreign governments and a Pentagon “attack plan,” the indictment states.
Trump also allegedly sought to obstruct government efforts to recover the documents, including by directing personal aide Walt Nauta — who was also charged — to move boxes to conceal them.
In the wake of Tuesday’s court hearing, Trump is slated to fly back to his Bedminster golf club in New Jersey, where he’ll give a press conference responding to the indictment.
Many of his supporters gathered in Miami dismissed the charges against the ex-president, telling The Post they were a manufactured witch hunt designed to knock Trump out of contention for the 2024 presidency.
“I think it’s patently unfair to prosecute Donald Trump as he is just beginning his campaign for president. It looks very much like a witch hunt and I think we need to fight for fairness in our system,” said Miami resident Ruth Swanson.
“It’s political theater. Especially since the Bidens have so much against them that hasn’t been addressed — from Hunter to Joe Biden.”
Others echoed those concerns, arguing that Democratic figures — including the Bidens and Hillary Clinton — have skated on more serious misconduct.
“It just shows you how corrupt things really are. We have a two-tiered justice system in America that we need fixed,” said Dave Valentine, an Ohio native.
“We need to get people who aren’t seriously for the country out of the way so the ones that do can step in.”
Binh Bo and Trang Ngoc, a married couple who’ve attended Trump events from Pennsylvania to Kentucky in an SUV wrapped in pro-Trump slogans, were also in attendance.
“I don’t want Trump to ever feel like he’s alone. I want him to know that the people are behind him. I’m here because I believe he is a good man and he is the only one who can help this country and the world,” the husband said.
SOURCE: New york post