Trump has been president for just two weeks, and he’s already taking a vacation. This is a guy who, during the presidential campaign, regularly hassled then President Obama for his travel. Now he is about to get a taste of his own medicine. Because Trump is not only traveling, he’s making money from taxpayers in the process.
President Donald Trump’s trip to his luxury resort in Mar-a-Lago this weekend will hit taxpayers with a bill upwards of $3 million, with a large the portion payable to Donald Trump. Now let that sink in for a moment.
This is a blatant conflict of interest and it is already drawing the kind of intense scrutiny Trump and Republicans hate.
According to Politico, the Florida trip is Trump’s first getaway as president and is expected to be part pleasure, part fundraising. He will reunite with his wife Melania, who has been living in Trump Tower in Manhattan as their 10-year-old son Barron finishes the school year, and then he will attend a fundraising gala, which is being held at Mar-a-Lago on Saturday night.
The trip, which is scheduled to last from Friday night to Monday morning, comes with a hefty price tag for taxpayers.
In between the socializing, Trump is set to make over $3 million from taxpayers and a lot more from donors staying at his luxury resort. But, according to Republicans, not conflict here.
“The closest approximation of the cost comes from a report the Government Accountability Office. The cost is approximately $3.6 million, the GAO found.
Trump’s multi-million-dollar trip, which comes just two weeks into his presidency, shows that Trump is not shy about engaging in expensive jet-setting so early in his presidency.
Trump and other Republicans heavily criticized Obama for his traveling throughout his 8-year tenure in the White House.
“President @BarackObama’s vacation is costing taxpayers millions of dollars——Unbelievable!” Trump opined on Twitter in July 2016.
Days later, he took aim at the First Lady: “With 15% US real unemployment and a 16T debt, @Michelle Obama’s luxurious Aspen vacation – her 16th – cost us over $1M.” (The unemployment rate at the time was actually 8.2 percent.)
The truth is, Obama took fewer vacations than his predecessor, George W. Bush.
The former president took 28 vacations spanning all or part of 217 days, according to Mark Knoller, a CBS News White House correspondent who maintains an authoritative record of presidential activities. By comparison, President George W. Bush made 77 visits to his Texas ranch spanning all or part of 490 days, and 11 visits to his family’s home in Kennebunkport, Maine, spanning all or part of 43 days, according to Knoller.
But now, as Trump is setting off on his own vacation for his “winter White House,” he is getting a taste of his own medicine.
If Trump makes Mar-a-Lago stays a regular feature of his time in office, he is set to make millions on taxpayers money.
But not conflict of interest here, according to Republicans.