US President Donald Trump will leave Washington DC on Wednesday morning (Thursday NZT), just before President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration later in the day, to begin his post-presidential life in Florida.
Refusing to abide by tradition and participate in the ceremonial transfer of power, Trump will instead hold his own departure ceremony at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland before his final flight aboard Air Force One.
Officials are considering an elaborate send-off event reminiscent of the receptions he's received during state visits abroad, complete with a red carpet, colour guard, military band and even a 21-gun salute, according to a person familiar with the planning who spoke on condition of anonymity ahead of a formal announcement.
Trump will become only the fourth president in history to boycott his successor's inauguration. And while he has now committed to a peaceful transition of power — after months of trying to delegitimise Biden's victory with baseless allegations of mass voter fraud and spurring on his supporters who stormed the Capitol — he has made clear he has no interest in making a show of it.
Trump has not invited the Bidens to the White House for the traditional bread-breaking, nor has he spoken with Biden by phone.
Vice President Mike Pence has spoken with his successor, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, calling her on Thursday (Friday NZT) to congratulate her and offer assistance, according to two people familiar with the call.
Pence will be attending Biden's inauguration in Trump's place, a move Biden has welcomed.
While Trump spends the final days of his presidency ensconced in the White House, more isolated than ever as he confronts the fallout from the Capitol riot, staffers are already heading out the door.
Many have already departed, including those who resigned after the attack, while others have been busy packing up their offices and moving out personal belongings — souvenirs and taxidermy included.
Chief of staff Mark Meadows' wife was caught on camera this week leaving with a dead, stuffed bird. And trade adviser Peter Navarro, who defended the President's effort to overturn the election, was photographed carrying out a giant photo of a meeting between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping. Also spotted departing the West Wing: a bust of Abraham Lincoln.
Trump's impeachment in the House of Representatives for "incitement of insurrection" now heads to a Senate trial, which will not begin until Biden is sworn in as the new president.
While he was once expected to leave office as the most powerful voice in his party and the leading contender for its 2024 nomination, the President has been shunned by much of the party over his response the violence.
Trump is expected to remain in Florida with a small group of aides as he mulls his future.