Donald Trump set to visit New York for first time since leaving White House

Ex-president expected as soon as Sunday night, reports say

Trump remains a divisive figure in New York, a Democratic city, amid two investigations which have added to his considerable legal jeopardy since losing the protections of office


Donald Trump could arrive in New York City for his first visit since leaving the White House as soon as Sunday night, according to multiple reports. The former president was born in Queens and rose to fame in Manhattan but changed his primary residence to Florida in 2019 and has been at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach since leaving Washington on 20 January.

After reports of a New York visit proliferated on Saturday, local station WABC-TV reported that police were preparing to increase security around Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue in midtown Manhattan. The New York police department did not comment.

Trump’s New York home was the subject of protests and a heavy police presence from the start of his run for the White House in summer 2015 through to the end of his term in office in the acrid aftermath of the 6 January Capitol attack.

In July 2020, amid national protests for racial justice and policing reform, city authorities painted the words “Black Lives Matter” on the street outside Trump Tower. Mayor Bill de Blasio claimed to have “liberated” that stretch of Fifth Avenue. The mural was repeatedly vandalized.

Trump was impeached for a second time for inciting the Capitol insurrection, in which five people died, as part of his claim that his defeat by Joe Biden was the result of electoral fraud, a lie repeatedly thrown out of court. He was acquitted, when only seven Republican senators voted to convict.

He retains a grip on Republican politics, regularly topping polls of potential presidential nominees for 2024 but this week reportedly demanding the party stop fundraising using his name.

On Saturday the New York Daily News quoted former Trump lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen referring to a gold statue which made a splash at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Florida last week, when he said: “The human Donald must … be put on display for the multitude of NYC followers.”

In truth Trump remains a divisive figure in New York, a Democratic city, amid two investigations which have added to his considerable legal jeopardy since losing the protections of office. Manhattan district attorney Cyrus Vance Jr and state attorney general Letitia James are both looking into Trump’s financial affairs.

Cohen is under house arrest in the city, completing a sentence for offenses including paying hush money to two women who claimed affairs with Trump, claims Trump denied though he admitted knowing of the payments.

Cohen has spoken to Vance. The Daily News said Trump’s visit would not be in connection with that investigation, which received a huge boost last month when the supreme court declined to block access to Trump’s tax returns and financial records.

Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner have also relocated to Florida since the end of their time in power, with Ivanka thought likely to mount a run for US Senate in the southern state.

Trump’s own future in Florida has been called into question. Though he owns the Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, a 1993 agreement says he cannot live there permanently. Last month the former president won favorable comments from the town attorney, in a hearing involving residents who want to hold Trump to that deal. A decision is due in April.

New York prosecutors conducted an hours-long interview on Thursday with Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s former attorney, asking a range of questions about the president’s business dealings, according to three people familiar with the meeting.

The interview focused in part on Trump’s relationship with Deutsche Bank, his biggest and longest-standing creditor, according to the people, who spoke on condition of anonymity. The interview, at least the second with Cohen by the Manhattan district attorney, comes amid a long-running grand jury investigation into Trump’s business dealings.

The district attorney, Cyrus Vance Jr, has been waging a protracted legal battle to get access to the president’s tax records. The New York investigation is one of several legal entanglements likely to intensify as Trump loses power – and any immunity from prosecution he might have as a sitting president.

The Manhattan-based grand jury has been continuing work despite the coronavirus pandemic, which has curtailed many court operations.

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