President Donald Trump left Washington, D.C., aboard Air Force One for one final time as president Wednesday morning, hours after he pardoned 73 people, including his former chief strategist, Steve Bannon, and rapper Lil Wayne, and commuted the sentences of 70 others.
Bucking the long tradition of attending his successor's inauguration, Trump is expected to have arrived in Florida by the time President-elect Joe Biden is sworn into office. Once Biden is sworn in, Trump will no longer have access to Air Force One.
"I wish the new administration great luck and great success," Trump told a crowd of supporters assembled at Joint Base Andrews to see him off. "I think they'll have great success. They have the foundation to do something really spectacular."
Several hundred people assembled at Joint Base Andrews near Air Force One for the remarks, including Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump, Lara Trump and Tiffany Trump. As the president delivered his remarks, the crowd chanted, "Thank you, Trump."
Trump highlighted the work of his administration, including the development and distribution of coronavirus vaccines through Operation Warp Speed. Trump spoke of the pandemic as if it was in the past, saying, "as bad as the pandemic was," as 400,000 Americans and counting have died.