Donald Trump is now a Florida man, report says

The New York Times is reporting that the president officially changed his residence to Palm Beach
President Donald Trump speaks during his rally held at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa on July 31, 2018.
President Donald Trump speaks during his rally held at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa on July 31, 2018. [ JONES, OCTAVIO | Tampa Bay Times ]
Published Nov. 1, 2019|Updated Nov. 1, 2019

Donald Trump, Florida man.

The New York Times is reporting that the president recently changed his primary residence to his Palm Beach resort Mar-a-Lago, choosing Florida as his permanent domicile over his longtime home in Manhattan.

His wife, First Lady Melania Trump, changed her address as well.

Speculation swirled immediately as to why Trump, who bought his Palm Beach estate in 1985, would choose now to change his residence. It seems he did it for the same reason many wealthy northerners move to the Sunshine State: to avoid paying state income taxes.

“I cherish New York, and the people of New York, and always will,” Trump tweeted Thursday night, “but unfortunately, despite the fact that I pay millions of dollars in city, state and local taxes each year, I have been treated very badly by the political leaders of both the city and state. Few have been treated worse.”

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The New York attorney general has subpoenaed Trump’s tax returns, which he has refused to make public despite repeated promises he would.

“Good riddance,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a statement. “It’s not like Mr. Trump paid taxes here anyway. He’s all yours, Florida.”

There are more questions than answers right now. Will Trump apply for a homestead exemption at Mar-a-Lago, which would decrease the tax burden on the South Florida property? Will he and the first lady register to vote here in time for him to cast 2020 ballots in Florida, perhaps the most important state for him to recapture?

If he is reelected in 2020, does that mean Florida would claim its first winner of a presidential contest?

“If I maintain another place or places of abode in some other state or states, I hereby declare that my above-described residence and abode in the State of Florida constitutes my predominant and principal home, and I intend to continue it permanently as such,” it says on a Palm Beach County document Trump filed in September, the Times reported.

The president has spent considerable time in Florida since winning election, to campaign and hold rallies, but also to golf and hold meetings with foreign leaders. Trump has spent 99 days at Mar-a-Lago since becoming president, according to NBC, five times as much time as he has at his former New York residence in Trump Tower.

Spending time in Palm Beach has proven much easier than returning to Manhattan, where secret service and protesters turn New York streets into a nightmare whenever Trump visits.

Word Trump swapped zip codes was met with a “Welcome HOME!” from Florida GOP chairman Joe Gruters, a Sarasota state senator.

Andrew Gillum, the Democratic candidate for governor last year, had a different take on the news.

Trump’s ties to the state began decades before his foray into politics. He reportedly first came to Miami as a boy and returned to the state often as a young New York developer and socialite. It’s home to one of the first golf courses Trump ever built and where his real estate empire has both flourished and crashed.

READ THE TAMPA BAY TIMES INVESTIGATION: How Trump bought a mansion, bucked Palm Beachand made the Sunshine State his second home.

In campaign speeches, Trump often reminds crowds that Florida is his second home. He will now have to change that line.