The Insane Travel & Leisure Costs of the Trump Presidency
Guest Post By: Kate Harveston
As a businessman, Trump was an embarrassing mess. So far, as president of the free world, he’s been more of the same.
Because what more effective litmus test could you imagine, for a man who campaigned as hard as Trump did on his financial wizardry, than a brief look at his expenses so far as commander-in-chief? You’d expect a man who’s promised to return this country to fiscal responsibility would exercise some of it himself.
Sadly, you’re going to be disappointed — but probably not surprised — that like everything about this man, the deeds play out far differently than the words. Here are four things he’s actually being paid to do.
1.Take Nearly Weekly Trips to Mar-a-Lago
In just his first month as POTUS, Trump spent on travel nearly what Obama spent in an entire year. Are we, you know, okay with that as reasonable people? Projections indicate he may outspend all eight years of Obama’s travel expenses by the end of his first year in office.
Most folks who stood by Trump during the election — and those who defy reasonableness by continuing to do so — praised him almost exclusively for:
a. His business acumen
b.His ostensibly unique ability to reign in excess and corruption in Washington.
People familiar with the facts know both of these “selling points” were nonsense from the start. We knew, for example, Trump has left behind a trail of bankrupt businesses and ruined business partners. So why on earth would anybody trust him with the nation’s coffers?
Trump’s favorite vacation destination since being sworn in is now-infamous Mar-a-Lago, an almost grotesquely ornate and luxurious place for a so-called “man of the people” to live. While he’s there, we pay him to deliberate over international crises within earshot of the public, we pay the Coast Guard to patrol the nearby waterline, and we pay other military, staffing and security concerns as well.
If Trump was concerned about waste in government, he’d take fewer vacations and stay where he doesn’t belong — in the White House.
2. Keep His Wife Safe in an Unnecessary NYC Residence
Americans are paying between $127,000 and $146,000 each day so Melania Trump and her son, Barron, can stay safe and sound up in Trump Tower in New York City.
We don’t need to begrudge the first lady her peace-of-mind nor wish her harm, but when 200,000 New York taxpayers sign a petition demanding she relocate herself to the White House and stop wasting their money on yet another unnecessary expense, you know you have a problem.
Thankfully, it looks like the First Family’s dual residences will stop in June, when Melania and Barron reunite with Trump at the White House. It sounds like it’ll not be a moment too soon for most New Yorkers.
3. Go on Hypocritical Golf Trips
Donald Trump spent his first weekend as POTUS golfing. And his second weekend. And his third weekend. In fact, he spent nine weekends in a row at a property bearing his brand-name. If you’re keeping score, you know taxpayers are on the hook for these trips, meaning dollars from the U.S. Treasury are literally flowing directly into this despot’s pockets. Welcome to a third-world dictatorship, America — we had a good run.
But it gets better. Besides being a self-absorbed spendthrift, Trump is also a hypocrite.
Thanks to Snopes, we know Trump fired off about 38 angry tweets to then-President Obama between 2014 and 2017 — about his golfing habit. “With so many problems facing the U.S.,” Trump wrote in 2014, “…President Obama spent the day playing golf. Worse than Carter.”
Well, guess what. King Baby went golfing six times in just his first month on the job. There seems to be no end to the ways Trump will prove his word means nothing.
4. The Missile Tantrum®
Finally, we arrive at Trump’s early-April tantrum, during which he fired 59 Tomahawk missiles at Syria in response to allegations of chemical weapons use. Most folks who know what Syrian “President” Bashar al-Assad is capable of likely know the man deserves far worse. Unfortunately, everything about how Trump has handled Syria has been done with all the tact and poise of a little boy who’s just been given his first Red Ryder BB gun.
This fruitless exhibition of America’s military prowess cost taxpayers $60 million and resulted in absolutely nothing noteworthy. But he needs to look “presidential,” and the mainstream media thinks launching missiles is good enough, so he’s probably not going to stop.
Oh, and there’s one more thing. Trump may or may not have personally profited from this reckless little charade. Up until last year, Candidate Trump himself owned stock in Raytheon, Inc. — the company that produced those Tomahawk missiles — and, since we’ve still got no idea what’s in his tax returns, he might still own stock in a company that manufactures weapons of mass destruction, while his stubby little fingers rest comfortably on the launch button.
Stay classy, Mr. Trump — we’ll all be watching