With the partial government shutdown set to break a record and become the longest in US history over the weekend, President Trump has decided that he won't be making a return appearance to the World Economic Forum in Davos this year.
Because of the "great importance of Safety for our Nation, I am respectfully cancelling my very important trip to Davos," Trump said.
This means that Trump won't have the opportunity to meet with Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan, who will also attend the conference (he will also avoid any awkward encounters with Russian oligarch and Treasury sanctions target Oleg Deripaska, whose ban from the conference was recently lifted).
Because of the Democrats intransigence on Border Security and the great importance of Safety for our Nation, I am respectfully cancelling my very important trip to Davos, Switzerland for the World Economic Forum. My warmest regards and apologies to the @WEF!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 10, 2019
Though Trump won't be attending, other senior administration officials, most notably Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, are still planning on going even if the shutdown standoff drags on.
Trump said during an interview earlier on Thursday before departing for Texas that he would likely still be traveling to Davos for the annual conference of the world's political and financial elite, though he said that if the shutdown were to continue, he wouldn't go.
"I intended to go and speak in front of the international community in Davos. That's still on, but if the shutdown continues - it's a little while from now - but if the shutdown continues, I won't go," Trump said.
By canceling the trip, Trump is in effect signaling that he expects that the shutdown could drag on - possibly for a few more weeks. The conference isn't slated to start until Jan. 22.