Trump-Xi Palm Beach summit: ‘Significant law enforcement presence’ promised

Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw.

Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw says there will be a “significant law enforcement presence” when President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping arrive today for their summit at Mar-a-Lago.


Comparing law enforcement preparations to those that come as a hurricane is approaching, Bradshaw said sheriff’s deputies and the Secret Service will be quick to crack down at the first sign of unruliness around Mar-a-Lago or the Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa in Manalapan, where the Chinese delegation is staying.


“We are not going to tolerate any civil disobedience, throwing of objects, or any other type of disorderly conduct whatsoever. At the first sign of that, it will be dealt with…People can come there, express their opinions, hold up all the signs they want to all day long, but when it turns to something other than that, then we are fully ready and capable to make sure that it doesn’t get out of hand,” Bradshaw said.


Click here to read more about security preparations for the upcoming summit  







George Soros, Jane Fonda, Norman Lear help Dem Andrew Gillum governor bid

Hedge fund billionaire George Soros and his son gave a combined $150,000 to a committee supporting Democrat Andrew Gillum for governor. (Soros photo by Kevin Wolf/AP)

With significant help from some of the biggest names in American liberalism, Tallahasee Mayor Andrew Gillum raised $765,000 in his first month as a Democratic candidate for governor, his campaign says.


Gillum announced  his candidacy last month. His Gillum for Governor committee raised $243,000 and his Forward Florida political committee raised $522,000, a Gillum spokesman said.


Billionaire George Soros gave $100,000 last week to Gillum’s Forward Florida committee and son Alex Soros chipped in another $50,000. TV producer and People For The American Way founder Norman Lear gave $50,000 to the committee and actress Jane Fonda contributed $7,000, according to a report filed by Forward Florida.


Gillum’s campaign says it also has grass roots support, including more than 3,500 online contributions averaging about $60 and donors from 56 of Florida’s 67 counties.


The other Democrat who has opened a campaign, Orlando-area businessman Chris King,  has raised more than $500,000 from contributors and added $1 million of his own money, according to his campaign. King’s fundraising figure includes $181,000 raised by his campaign itself and $325,000 raised by his Rise and Lead, Florida, a committee set up last month.


Gillum and King are among several Democrats who could run in 2018, when Republican Gov. Rick Scott faces term limits (and is expected to run for the seat of Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson).


Neither Gillum nor King is well-known statewide, so raising early money is crucial to build recognition across America’s third-largest state.






The emerging wild card at Trump-Xi summit in Palm Beach

One tropical estate. Two world leaders. The summit begins Thursday in Palm Beach.

PALM BEACH — President Donald Trump has been slamming China on trade and accusing it of currency manipulation for more than a year.


But when Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping meet Thursday for their summit at Mar-a-Lago, the biggest issue could be North Korea — which test-fired another ballistic missile Tuesday.



Trump wants China to exert more influence on North Korea to curb its development of nuclear weapons. If China doesn’t help, Trump recently told The Financial Times the U.S. is prepared to act unilaterally. On Tuesday, a senior administration official briefing reporters on the upcoming Trump-Xi summit said of North Korea: “The clock has run out and all options are on the table for us.”


Click here for a preview of the Trump-Xi summit — and find out why it’ll be in Palm Beach rather than Washington.



Trump: Syria chemical attack a result of Obama ‘weakness and irresolution’

President Donald Trump at Palm Beach International Airport in February. (Allen Eyestone / The Palm Beach Post)

President Donald Trump condemned a chemical weapons attack in Syria as “reprehensible” and “heinous” and blamed it on former President Barack Obama‘s “weakness and irresolution.”

Said Trump in a statement released this afternoon: “Today’s chemical attack in Syria against innocent people, including women and children, is reprehensible and cannot be ignored by the civilized world. These heinous actions by the Bashar al-Assad regime are a consequence of the past administration’s weakness and irresolution. President Obama said in 2012 that he would establish a ‘red line’ against the use of chemical weapons and then did nothing. The United States stands with our allies across the globe to condemn this intolerable attack.”

» COMPLETE COVERAGE: President Donald Trump in Palm Beach

This photo provided by the Syrian anti-government activist group Edlib Media Center, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows Syrian doctors treating a child following a suspected chemical attack, at a makeshift hospital, in the town of Khan Sheikhoun, northern Idlib province, Syria. The suspected chemical attack killed dozens of people on Tuesday, Syrian opposition activists said, describing the attack as among the worst in the country’s six-year civil war. (Edlib Media Center, via AP)

Obama famously declared in 2012 that Syria’s use of chemical weapons would be a “red line for us.” When Syrian President Bashar Assad used chemical weapons against its own citizens a year later, the U.S. did not take military action after Assad agreed to destroy his chemical weapons stockpile.

During the 2013 debate over whether the U.S. should take military action, private citizen Trump weighed in against the idea on Twitter.

“President Obama, do not attack Syria. There is no upside and tremendous downside. Save your ‘powder’ for another (and more important) day!” Trump tweeted on Sept. 7, 2013.





Video: Recalling Gerald Ford, previewing Trump-Xi summit, counting costs

Gerald Ford plaque in Lantana; Xi and Trump.

PALM BEACH — As President Donald Trump‘s summit at Mar-a-Lago with Chinese President Xi Jinping approaches, Post reporter George Bennett gives a 100-second video overview of what they’ll discuss and how much Trump’s visits to his southern White House are costing local taxpayers.


Click here to read all our recent Trump coverage at

White House releases official portrait of first lady Melania Trump

The official White House portrait of Melania Trump.

The White House today released an official portrait of first lady Melania Trump.

Here’s her official write-up on the White House website.

Melania Trump is expected to accompany President Donald Trump to Palm Beach this week for the Mar-a-Lago summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Trump in Palm Beach: Deutch says feds must help local taxpayers on costs

Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton, at left, with Jim DeFede on Sunday’s edition of Facing South Florida.

As President Donald Trump heads back to Palm Beach this week for a summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping, U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton, says Palm Beach County taxpayers need relief from mounting security costs.

Deutch appeared Sunday on CBS Miami’s Facing South Florida with Jim DeFede. He signed a recent letter by Rep. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach, asking Trump to help get the federal government to reimburse costs for the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office and other local agencies who assist the Secret Service when the president is in town.

Frankel said county taxpayers could incur $280,000 in new costs during Trump’s upcoming four-day stay at Mar-a-Lago.

“When he comes it costs a lot of money and it costs Palm Beach County a lot of money to provide additional security…I don’t think the taxpayers of Palm Beach County should be forced to shoulder 100 percent of the burden of having the president come down here to play golf,” Deutch said.

“If he’s going to come down on a regular basis we have to make sure it’s secure but we also have to make sure that the costs to provide that security aren’t borne entirely by the people of South Florida,” Deutch said.

Gov. Rick Scott will be at WrestleMania 33 in Orlando

Gov. Rick Scott (right) plans to attend WrestleMania 33 in Orlando tonight.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott‘s official schedule for today includes only one event: WrestleMania 33 at Camping World Stadium — formerly known as the Citrus Bowl — in Orlando.

Today’s official schedules for Gov. Rick Scott and Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera.

The governor’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for more details on what Scott will be doing at the World Wrestling Entertainment event.

But don’t hold your breath for the governor to appear with Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera in a tag-team match. Lopez-Cantera’s schedule, also released this morning, includes no official events.

Trump-Xi summit in Palm Beach: The expectations game

Palm Beach summiteers Xi and Trump

PALM BEACH — President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping are preparing for this week’s summit at Mar-a-Lago.


Trump, who last week said (perhaps jokingly) that striking a health care deal would be “such an easy one,” is saying his meeting with Xi will be “very difficult.”


State-run Chinese media says the Trump-Xi faceoff is “a good opportunity to deepen their personal understanding of each other.”


Click here to read about some of the issues between the U.S. and China — including trade, Taiwan and the South China sea.

Donald Trump on China, from Tiananmen Square to trade ‘rape’

Donald Trump, shown here at a rally at the South Florida Fairgrounds in October, often ripped China on the campaign trail.

PALM BEACH — When he wasn’t slamming Mexican “rapists” or “Crooked” Hillary Clinton, some of Donald Trump‘s toughest talk as a 2016 presidential candidate was aimed at China.

Palm Beach summiteers Xi and Trump

Trump has toned down his China rhetoric a little as president.

But with his underlying criticism of China’s trade policies, Trump is predicting a “very difficult” summit next week when he hosts Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mar-a-Lago.


Click here for a look at some of the issues likely to come up at the summit — and how Trump and the Chinese are setting expectations going in.


Here’s a look at some of Trump’s positions on China over the years:


Trump weighed in on Tiananmen Square and Chinese “strength” in 1990.

TIANANMEN SQUARE: “When the students poured into Tiananmen Square, the Chinese government almost blew it. Then they were vicious, they were horrible, but they put it down with strength. That shows you the power of strength. Our country is right now perceived as weak … as being spit on by the rest of the world.” (Playboy interview, 1990)


GLOBAL WARMING: “The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.” (Twitter, Nov. 6, 2012)

CURRENCY MANIPULATION: “On day one of a Trump administration, the U.S. Treasury Department will designate China a currency manipulator.” (Wall Street Journal column, Nov. 9, 2015)

TRADE POLICY: “We can’t continue to allow china to rape our country, and that’s what they’re doing. It’s the greatest theft in the history of the world,” (Fort Wayne, Ind., campaign rally, May 1, 2016)

Trump talked tariffs at a Miami GOP debate in March 2016 (Alan Diaz/AP)

45% TARIFF THREAT: “We can’t get into China. I have the best people, manufacturers, they can’t get in. When they get in, they have to pay a tremendous tax. The 45 percent is a threat that if they don’t behave, if they don’t follow the rules and regulations so that we can have it equal on both sides, we will tax you.” (Miami GOP debate, March 10, 2016)

NORTH KOREA: “China, they don’t like to tell us but they have total control — just about, of North Korea. They can solve the problem of North Korea if they wanted to but they taunt us. They say, ‘well, we don’t really have control.’ Without China, North Korea doesn’t even eat.” (South Carolina GOP debate, Jan. 15, 2016)

SOUTH CHINA SEA: “To ensure the security of the nation and our investments, we will build the military we need to contain China’s overreach in the Pacific Rim and the South China Sea,” (Wall Street Journal column, Nov. 9, 2015)