Source: Trump cancels Mar-a-Lago trip ahead of anticipated government shutdown
Posted January 18, 2018 10:10 p.m. EST
Updated January 19, 2018 12:27 p.m. EST
WASHINGTON (CNN) — President Donald Trump has canceled his planned trip to his posh Florida resort Friday, anticipating that lawmakers can't avert the looming government shutdown set to take effect at midnight, according to a government official.
A White House spokeswoman denied that Trump's planned trip to Florida had been canceled, saying no decisions about travel beyond Friday have yet been made.
The President had been planning to spend the weekend at Mar-a-Lago for the one-year anniversary of his inauguration and is hosting a Saturday night fundraising soiree with $100,000 tickets.
The amount, confirmed to CNN by a person familiar with the dinner, pays for a couple's dinner and photograph with Trump. A $250,000 ticket will allow a pair to participate in a roundtable. All proceeds will benefit the Trump Victory Fund, the source confirmed.
A Republican National Committee official told CNN they are determining what will become of fundraiser gala -- Trump could be beamed in via video or could be rescheduled, but many people are already in or en route to Palm Beach.
Bloomberg first reported the ticket information.
The White House was optimistic Thursday afternoon that lawmakers would come to a resolution, but that was ahead of the Senate's decision to abort action late Thursday night when they reached an impasse.
A senior White House official said they discussed at a Friday morning staff meeting that Trump will stay in Washington until a bill is passed.
"He can't go until it's done," the official said before the decision to cancel the trip was made.
The optics of being in Mar-a-Lago during a government shutdown would be terrible, the official said, but so far the contingency plan being most discussed is delaying departure until Saturday.
Supporters from across the country have flown into Palm Beach for the big gala fundraiser, which Trump wants to attend, but it remains to be determined.
Vice President Mike Pence is also scheduled to leave Washington Friday evening for his three-country swing to the Middle East. Pence will go to Egypt, Israel and Jordan.
The House voted Thursday night to keep the government open through mid-February, and now the matter moves to the Senate.
If the Senate passes the legislation, it would then be sent to Trump's desk for him to sign.
CNN's Jim Acosta reported Thursday that White House staffers were mulling the idea that Trump could use Twitter later to signal that the federal government will not close down.
The idea is that if the Senate passes the continuing resolution to keep the government open Friday, the President could then tweet that he will sign the continuing resolution. That would be an indication the government is open, even if he signs the actual bill at a later time.