Sunday, September 23, 2018
Politics

When Xi meets with Trump at Mar-a Lago, one thing's for sure: no golf

HONG KONG — When President Xi Jinping of China meets with President Donald Trump on Thursday, he will take with him an agenda at odds with that of his U.S. counterpart, leaving the world guessing how the two might hash out questions about trade and North Korea's nuclear provocations.

But one thing is certain: They will not golf.

However the two leaders spend their time at Trump's Mar-a Lago club in Palm Beach, "it's safe to say there's not going to be any golf," the White House said in a statement.

RELATED: Trump presses China on North Korea.

That means that Trump will not try to build a warm rapport with Xi on the golf course as he did when Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan visited Mar-a-Lago in February.

While Xi is known to be an avid soccer fan bent on transforming China into a great soccer power, the Chinese Communist Party's contempt for golf as a rich man's game places him at odds with Trump, who owns more than a dozen golf courses and whose so-called Winter White House, the Mar-a-Lago club, charges more than $200,000 for membership.

Under Xi's leadership, a crackdown on corruption has depicted golf as a temptation that led party officials astray. Dozens of courses across the country have been shut in recent years, ostensibly to preserve water and arable lands.

Although as many as 1 million people in China, not necessarily part of the wealthy elite, play golf, the game has become a symbol of capitalist excesses and corruption in the eyes of the Communist Party. That view goes back to 1949, when Mao Zedong declared golf the "sport for millionaires."

Members of the Communist Party may avoid spending time on the links, but Trump's golf properties have prospered since his election, prompting accusations of conflict of interest.

What might Trump and Xi do instead of playing golf over the two-day visit?

"It's possible that they'll walk around a bit, as the mood strikes," the White House statement said, "but nothing formal or nothing involving golf clubs."

Comments

AP source: Kavanaugh, Ford agree to testify on Thursday

WASHINGTON — Negotiators reached a tentative agreement Saturday for the Senate Judiciary Committee to hear testimony Thursday from Christine Blasey Ford, the woman accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault from decades ago, two...
Updated: 6 hours ago

Trump administration aims to sharply restrict new green cards for those on public aid

WASHINGTON — Trump administration officials announced Saturday that immigrants who legally use public benefits like food assistance and Section 8 housing vouchers could be denied green cards under new rules aimed at keeping out people the administrat...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Dana Young, Janet Cruz spar over guns, schools, environment in crucial Senate race

Dana Young, Janet Cruz spar over guns, schools, environment in crucial Senate race

TAMPA — During a showdown Friday in Florida’s most hotly contested state Senate race, Democratic challenger Janet Cruz launched fireworks at Dana Young over education funding, the environment and guns.Young, the Republican incumbent in District 18, r...
Published: 09/21/18
Confederate group banned from Temple Terrace country club, may take legal action

Confederate group banned from Temple Terrace country club, may take legal action

TEMPLE TERRACE — After complaints from city residents, the Temple Terrace Golf & Country Club has notified the City Council that it will not rent space again to the Sons of Confederate Veterans for its annual banquet.The country clubȁ...
Published: 09/20/18
Carlton: Should felons who have done their time get to vote? Citizens of Florida, it’s in your hands

Carlton: Should felons who have done their time get to vote? Citizens of Florida, it’s in your hands

It’s not often that we citizens — busy with work, paying the bills, living our lives — find ourselves with the power to right a fundamental wrong.But here in Florida, we’re about to get that chance.On the November ballot — among all those candidates ...
Published: 09/20/18
Daniel Ruth: City owes Gonzmart and Princess Ulele more than a notice of code violation

Daniel Ruth: City owes Gonzmart and Princess Ulele more than a notice of code violation

This has to be height of bureaucratic pettiness, especially for a city whose track record in promoting quality public art falls somewhere between stick figures and finger puppets.Richard Gonzmart is a community treasure. As the force behind a number ...
Published: 09/19/18
Romano: Florida’s dangerous prisons costing us more than money

Romano: Florida’s dangerous prisons costing us more than money

Two things you need to know about Florida’s prison budget:1. It was $2.3 billion this year.2. It was still not enough.Kind of staggering when you think of it that way, huh?We keep spending more and more on housing prisoners, and it’s like throwing mo...
Published: 09/18/18
Kavanaugh to testify after denying sexual assault allegations

Kavanaugh to testify after denying sexual assault allegations

WASHINGTON — Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh said Monday he was willing to speak to a Senate panel to "refute" an allegation he sexually assaulted a woman while in high school, after his accuser said via her attorney that she was ready to testi...
Published: 09/17/18
California professor, writer of confidential Brett Kavanaugh letter, speaks out about her allegation of sexual assault

California professor, writer of confidential Brett Kavanaugh letter, speaks out about her allegation of sexual assault

Earlier this summer, Christine Blasey Ford wrote a confidential letter to a senior Democratic lawmaker alleging that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her more than three decades ago, when they were high school students in subu...
Published: 09/16/18
Cuban refugee numbers plummet in Tampa area with cuts at Havana embassy

Cuban refugee numbers plummet in Tampa area with cuts at Havana embassy

It’s been nearly a year since the U.S. embassy in Havana suspended processing requests from people hoping to leave the island nation as refugees. The reason: Staffing was reduced to a skeleton crew in the wake of mysterious health attacks on em...
Published: 09/17/18