Donald Trump seems particularly unsuitable for prison life. While self-esteem is not often cited as one of his greatest attributes, he most likely understands this unique, essential fact about himself: he would not care about prison and prison would not care about him. He can be expected to do everything possible to avoid this – anything but illegal activities such as those normally resulting in prison terms.
It appears he actually did a fair amount of illegal activations, and enough of it seems so far beyond the scope of the president’s self-forgiveness that various New York prosecutors are ready to indict him as soon as he leaves that poor determined desk. And so, in a time of incessant, incessant firsts, the President of the United States could soon find himself on the run for the first time in history.
While it is difficult to imagine that the leader of the free world is among the various aging Nazis, ousted despots, retired gangsters, and dead ex-husbands currently circling the globe in search of hiding place, it is difficult to when the president’s immunity is lost to see what alternative he would have. The President gave us a hint that is so subtle that it is almost imperceptible that he may have to leave the country: At a recent political rally he said, “Maybe I have to leave the country.”
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The question is, where could Donald Trump be going?
To determine the foreign country to which the President of the United States would most likely flee, we will employ a complex rating system that takes into account the factors that would be most likely to flow into his deliberations, weighted by the importance he would likely be hang on everyone.
Ten points are awarded first of all if Trump’s new future home does not have an extradition treaty with the United States; nine if it has failed to honor its extradition treaty with the United States in the past.
The country must, of course, keep Trump in the style he has become accustomed to: golf courses are worth five points; very bright, very tall buildings another five. Other attractions include being Russia-friendly (11 points), housing Trump-owned property or businesses (five points), and providing a tax environment for billionaires who would rather pay in the $ 750 (five point) range. A country can earn a maximum of 41 points.
Slovenia: Melania Trump is from Slovenia; However, our methodology does not recognize a connection to Trump’s wife as an indication of travel preference. This is not a flaw in our methodology. 0/41
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All over Africa: Trump could soon regret referring to nations that would otherwise have hosted him as “s-thole” countries – although many countries in Africa have no extradition treaties with the United States and, much like American voters, may send him back pure Joy in it. 10/41
Scotland: Trump likes golf; Trump is very fond of playing golf on his own golf courses. That’s why Trump really likes Scotland. Scotland unfortunately likes the rules-based international order, classical architecture and extradition treaties with the United States. 10/41
France: The French do not have particularly low taxes; On the other hand, they have golf courses and various gold-plated things. And in France (which would never be so strict as to reliably adhere to the rigidity of an extradition treaty) currently lives Roman Polanski – like Trump, an entertainment professional who likes to relax, eat good food and is accused of rape in his spare time. It is a possibility. 15/41
Macau: Gambling institutions have acquired the right to use Trump’s trademark in Macau, undoubtedly as an attraction for the discerning gambler who likes his post-bankrupt casinos. Macau is a haven for tax evaders and a hideout for refugees. It’s dazzling, bright, and there’s probably a golf slot machine somewhere on the island. The only thing missing is a nice Russian dictator to share with. 30/41
Andorra: Andorra is a rare example of a European nation with no extradition treaty with the United States. Unfortunately, it is no longer the tax haven it once was. Trump would also be bored. No high society to complain about, no skyscrapers, just … churches. 10/41
Montenegro: Also in Europe, even without an extradition contract. It doesn’t attract golfers because it basically doesn’t have golf courses, but it does attract property investors, especially those looking to take advantage of the offer of a permit in exchange for property purchases. It also attracts Russian tourists and bots, with the latter making concerted efforts to sway this strategically located country more in Putin’s favor. You have an easy task: In Montenegro, Russia is seen more favorably than any other country, and – like Trump – around 40 percent of Montenegrins say they admire Putin.
But again: churches. 26/41
Saudi Arabia: When Trump introduced his Muslim ban, some Muslim countries were removed from the list. Saudi Arabia was one of them. Trump does business in Saudi Arabia, and Saudi Arabia has announced that it would prefer to continue doing political deals with Trump. Trump declared an emergency just so he could veto House opposition by signing an $ 8 billion arms deal with the kingdom. Masters play golf there, billionaires lay their money there, skyscrapers there, skyscrapers. We could easily conclude that Trump could go there – if only Putin could go too. Moscow’s relations with Riyadh are strained, but perhaps not so bad that they govern Trump’s potential relocation plans. 35.5 / 41
Russia: There are few places in the world more pro-Russia than Russia itself, and few world leaders more pro-Russia than Trump. In the 1980s, golf courses were built near Moscow to attract American investors. Trump is one of the American investors who committed. Russia, on the other hand, appears to have invested in Trump. Granted, Moscow and St. Petersburg don’t have many of the 58-story mirrors that are Trump’s preferred building type, but Putin would probably have him build one at some point that the American president could be safely locked in, so half-points for Phallic’s architecture. Moscow has a long tradition of involuntarily protecting its western assets. In terms of taxes, Putin employees receive a discount. It’s almost perfect – but not quite. 38.5 / 41
UAE: Another Muslim country apologized for Trump’s Muslim ban; another country with no extradition treaty with the United States; another tax haven. But it’s only the UAE that Trump recently signed a multi-billion dollar arms deal with just as he lost a presidential election. The UAE is also becoming a closer strategic partner to Russia in the Middle East, as both generally share a similar view of the region’s popular democratic movements: they don’t like them.
In terms of lifestyle, the UAE is not known for flowing champagne, but Trump doesn’t drink anyway for fear it would affect his very sound judgment. The United Arab Emirates has beautiful golf courses: they built them the way they built their islands – by stacking stacks of cash on top of each other. Compared to New York, Dubai may have all the glitz with little glamor, but that is extremely branding for Trump. And Dubai not only has taller buildings than any other country on this list, it also has the tallest building in the world. For the first time in his life, Trump could boast about the greatness of something and be right. For Trump, the UAE get a perfect score.
Forecast: If the President of the United States becomes an international refugee, he will seek refuge in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Of course, this assumes that he reacts to defeat by actually leaving his office. Which would require him to obey the law. Which one do you know …
This article appears in print in the January 2021 issue of Macleans Magazine, entitled “President on the lam.” Subscribe to the monthly print magazine here.