Wednesday 16 January 2019

Donald Trump enjoys lavish NYE party and predicts 'tremendous' 2018

Donald and Melania Trump arrive for a New Year's Eve gala at the US president's Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida (Evan Vucci/AP)
Donald and Melania Trump arrive for a New Year's Eve gala at the US president's Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida (Evan Vucci/AP)

US President Donald Trump has predicted 2018 will be a "tremendous year" after bidding farewell to 2017 with a lavish party at his private club in Florida.

Mr Trump said the stock market will continue to rise and that companies are going to continue to come into the US at "a rapid clip".

He also cited several accomplishments, including the tax overhaul, opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling, and repealing the individual mandate from the national healthcare law.

"It will be a fantastic 2018," Mr Trump said as he entered the gilded ballroom at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, accompanied by first lady Melania Trump and son Barron.

Asked for his reaction to North Korea leader Kim Jong Un's remarks about having a nuclear button on his desk, Mr Trump responded by saying: "We'll see."

Guests gathered in the decorated ballroom included senior White House advisers Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, Mr Trump's sons Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr and treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin.

Since taking office, President Trump has made frequent visits to his for-profit properties.

He has refused to divest from his property and hotel empire, drawing criticism from ethics experts.

Earlier in the day, Mr Trump capped 2017 with a video self-tribute touching on what he sees as the high points of his achievements and rhetoric from his first year in office.

In the three-and-a-half minute video, scenes of Mr Trump with military personnel, Border Patrol agents and other world leaders are set to a stirring soundtrack as he declares of his country: "We gave birth to the modern world and we will shape tomorrow's world with the strength and skill of American hands."

Mr Trump cited his success in placing a justice on the Supreme Court, his efforts to cut regulations and his big win on overhauling taxes, which he falsely described as the "largest tax cut in the history of our country".

He offered the video with a New Year's Eve message: "What a year it's been, and we're just getting started. Together, we are MAKING AMERICA GREAT AGAIN! Happy New Year!!"

He later produced another Twitter message, loaded with his signature bombast: "As our Country rapidly grows stronger and smarter, I want to wish all of my friends, supporters, enemies, haters, and even the very dishonest Fake News Media, a Happy and Healthy New Year. 2018 will be a great year for America!"


Press Association

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