President Trump once questioned the wisdom of taking vacations. “What’s the point?” he asked. But now the president is getting ready to join the annual August exodus from this town he calls “the swamp” on a 17-day getaway to his private golf club in central New Jersey, several news outlets reported Thursday.
Trump, who has made millions in profit from his weekend trips to his reports, will begin a 17-day August vacation at his private golf club in New Jersey on Friday, according to the Associated Press.
Trump and his supporters like to tout his disdain for taking vacations, when the truth is he takes them constantly.
So far, the president has spent 13 of his 28 weekends in office away from the White House, mostly at his properties in Palm Beach, Florida, or in Bedminster, New Jersey, according to an Associated Press count. The figures include a weekend during official travel overseas, and Father’s Day weekend at Camp David, the government-owned presidential retreat in Maryland.
Contrast Trump’s own frequent getaways with his criticism, before and during last year’s presidential campaign, of former President Barack Obama’s vacations and frequent golf outings.
“@BarackObama played golf yesterday. Now he heads to a 10 day vacation in Martha’s Vineyard. Nice work ethic,” Trump tweeted in August 2011.
Trump said last year that he wouldn’t have time for golf if he became president. “I’m going to be working for you, I’m not going to have time to go play golf,” he told supporters in Virginia. But he plays golf whenever he’s at his clubs; sometimes it’s the full 18 holes, other times less than that. His staff rarely acknowledges that he plays, even when photos of him on the course pop up on social media.
Trump’s trip could partially be related to the fact that the government is replacing the heating and cooling system in the White House’s West Wing, so everyone who works there will need to leave by the end of the week, according to the report.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders earlier this week was asked whether Trump would leave Washington this month.
“We’ll continue to keep you guys updated on his August schedule as those details are finalized,” she told reporters.
Trump had previously urged GOP senators to cancel their August recess and not leave town until voting to repeal ObamaCare. GOP senators failed last week to pass even a “skinny” bill repealing ObamaCare.