President Donald Trump sent out his praise to “AMAZING CHAMPION” Tiger Woods in the wake of the golfer’s 82nd PGA Tour win.
Woods won the record-tying title Monday, tying with Sam Snead for highest number of PGA Tour championships.
“Great going Tiger!” Trump said Monday.
“Well, it’s a big number,” Woods said after winning. “It’s about consistency and doing it for a long period of time. Sam did it into his 50s, and I’m in my early to mid-40s. So it’s about being consistent and doing it for a very long period of time. I’ve been very fortunate to have had the career I’ve had so far.”
“You have seen the good and the bad, the highs and the lows and I would not be in this position without all of your help… I love you guys so much,” Woods said in his speech, thanking friends and family.
The duo shares a love of the game of golf, but both have also risen to unpredictable and spectacular comebacks: Trump from bankruptcy to the presidency; Woods from public shamingfollowing multiple affairs, injuries and a resulting painkiller addiction, to winning this year’s Masters.
The Medal of Freedom recognizes individuals who have made “an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, cultural or other significant public or private endeavors,” according to the executive order designating the award. Since taking office, Trump has presented the award to numerous athletes, including Alan Page, Roger Staubach, and a posthumous award to Babe Ruth.
Trump, who has a long history with Woods, said in a tweet after the Masters that he had congratulated the golfer on the win and his comeback, announcing that he would be giving him the award.
“Spoke to @TigerWoods to congratulate him on the great victory he had in yesterday’s @TheMasters, & to inform him that because of his incredible Success & Comeback in Sports (Golf) and, more importantly, LIFE, I will be presenting him with the PRESIDENTIAL MEDAL OF FREEDOM!” the tweet said.
Woods’ career slumped following his divorce and surrounding scandal in late 2009 and early 2010. He lost about $20 million from estimated endorsements after sponsors including Gatorade, AT&T, and Accenture cut ties. After a string of losses in 2011, Woods failed to make the World Golf Ranking’s top 50 players list. But one fan who stuck with him: Donald Trump, who supported the embattled golfer in March 2013 via Twitter.
“I remained strong for @TigerWoods during his difficult period. He rewarded me (and himself) by winning at Trump National Doral,” Trump wrote.
While it’s entirely up to the President’s discretion as to who receives the Medal of Freedom, the choice of Woods, who at 43 is still relatively young compared to other recipients, has raised eyebrows for Trump’s business ties to the pro golfer.
Trump, an avid golfer, owns courses across the world and frequently hits the links, playing most recently this Saturday at the Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia. His Trump National Doral in Miami has a villa named for Woods. According to The New York Times, Woods celebrated his first Masters win in 1997 at Trump’s Taj Mahal casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
And, per the Times, Woods is designing a course in Dubai that would be managed by the Trump Organization. Though it was expected to be completed by the end of 2017, it has yet to open, and a spokesman for Woods declined to comment to the Times.
The President has played multiple rounds with Woods, including alongside Jack Nicklaus in February at Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter, Florida.
President Donald Trump tweeted Monday that he plans to give Tiger Woods the Presidential Medal of Freedom — the nation’s highest civilian honor — in recognition of his “incredible Success & Comeback in Sports (Golf) and, more importantly, LIFE.”
He walked off the course to an ecstatic response from assembled fans and his friends and family, including his two young children.
“It’s hard to comprehend right now. I mean, honestly, it’s only been a few hours out of winning the tournament,” Woods told CNN later Sunday. “I’m still trying to enjoy it and figure out that I actually won it.”
“I know I have the green jacket on but it’s just, it’s still, I think it’s going to take a little bit of time to sink in,” he added, referring to the iconic jacket awarded to the Masters winner each year.
In his Monday tweet, President Trump said he and Woods had spoken after the Masters win and Trump congratulated him on his “great victory.” The two have been friendly over the years and golfed together earlier this year.
“He’s the President of the United States,” Woods said. “You have to respect the office. No matter who is in the office, you may like, dislike personality or the politics, but we all must respect the office.”
The Presidential Medal of Freedom is customarily awarded to a range of figures including artists, business leaders, philanthropists and politicians. Last year Trump awarded medals to, among others, Sen. Orrin Hatch and the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
Woods was a trailblazing figure in golf in the ’90s and well into the ’00s where he racked up major win after major win. But the revelation that a series of women said they had affairs with him while he was married to Elin Nordegren seriously damaged his image, and a series of back problems and surgeries imperiled his athletic performance.
Back from his round of golf with Tiger Woods, President Donald Trumptook to Twitter on Saturday evening to bash the New York Times for being corrupt after running a story about sanctuary cities.
“The New York Times Sanctuary Cities/Immigration story today was knowingly wrong on almost every fact. They never call to check for truth. Their sources often don’t even exist, a fraud. They will lie & cheat anyway possible to make me look bad. In 6 years they will be gone,” Trump wrote.
He also insisted that the paper had to beg subscribers for forgiveness after botching coverage of the 2016 election.
“When I won the Election in 2016, the @nytimes had to beg their fleeing subscribers for forgiveness in that they covered the Election (and me) so badly,” Trump wrote. “They didn’t have a clue, it was pathetic. They even apologized to me. But now they are even worse, really corrupt reporting!”
Trump, by the way, doesn’t exactly have his facts right. The New York Timesactually reported that they had a “Trump bump” as a result of the election.
More than three million paid digital-only subscribers. More than four million total.
The New York Times Company announced on Thursday that it surpassed those milestones during the third quarter of 2018, when the number of its digital subscribers showed a net increase of roughly 203,000.
That was the highest gain in digital subscribers in a quarter since the so-called Trump bump in the fourth quarter of 2016 and the first quarter of 2017 after the presidential election.
President Trump made a rare acknowledgement Friday of his plans to play golf, noting in a tweet that he was teeing off with Tiger Woods but stressing he will play “quickly” before returning to the burdens of the office.
Trump, who is spending Thanksgiving weekend at Mar-a-Lago, said he will play with the golf legend as well as Dustin Johnson, currently ranked the world’s No. 1 golfer.
After Turkey call I will be heading over to Trump National Golf Club, Jupiter, to play golf (quickly) with Tiger Woods and Dustin Johnson. Then back to Mar-a-Lago for talks on bringing even more jobs and companies back to the USA!
The threesome is scheduled to tee off at the Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter, Fla., about 20 miles north of the presidential retreat at Mar-a-Lago.
Trump was careful in his tweet to underscore he planned a quick round. He also said he was going to be talking to the president of Turkey and also focusing on the economy.
He also used his pre-golf morning to blast NFL players who “disrespect” the country, the flag and national anthem with their pre-game protests “without penalty.”
Since taking office, Trump has rarely acknowledged playing golf. In recent years, particularly during the 2016 campaign, he slammed President Obama repeatedly for playing the game, chiding his “work ethic” and even criticizing the president for going to Hawaii during the holiday and taking Secret Service personnel away from their families.
For his part, Trump pledged to largely forego golf while in office, saying he was “not going to have time to play golf.”
After a year in the Oval Office, however, published reports indicate he has played at least 34 times since the inauguration and has visited his golf courses more than 70 times.
In addition, the traveling press is rarely allowed to observe his rounds and aides traditionally decline to say when the golf is played.
This week, after the presidential entourage arrived in Florida, the White House had to correct itself after a spokesperson initially said she was expecting a “low-key day” while the president spent time at the Florida resort. Minutes later, the correction was that the president “will NOT have a low-key day.”
Abut 90 minutes later, however, the press poll noted the motorcade arriving at a Trump golf club near West Palm Beach and left some five hours later, the New York Post reported.
Aides were mum on how he spent the time period, which is roughly the length of a round of golf, unless you play quickly.