NBC News has been tracking President Donald Trump’s frequent visits to his properties and golf courses. Out of the first 191 days in office, Trump has spent 58 days at his properties and 43 at his golf properties.
During his campaign, Trump promised that he wouldn’t go golfing or take vacations because there was too much work to do. Just six months into his term, Trump has visited the golf course more than his three predecessors. At this point in his presidency, former President Barack Obama had gone golfing once; whereas, President Trump has golfed at least 15 times.
The precise number of times Trump has golfed is unknown because his administration keeps his activity secret. They keep the press pool away, so social media has become the reigning source of information on how many times the President has been golfing (because someone always catches a selfie with Trump in the background).
President Trump’s trips have cost millions of dollars of taxpayer money. These costs are made up of the use of Air Force One, the Secret Service, local sheriff’s departments, the Coast Guard, and other security organizations. Unfortunately, the costs are not disclosed.
These costs raise many ethical concerns. Before becoming President, Trump criticized President Obama for taking vacations when there was “so much work to be done.”
However, since his Inauguration, Trump has spent 13 weekends at Mar-a-Lago, which he has nicknamed the “Winter White House.” He has even hosted world leaders there, such as Chinese President Xi Jinping. Now that summer is here he seems to prefer his New Jersey property.
Ethics expert Steve Schooner told NBC News:
“It’s just another example of his consistent efforts to exploit public office for private gain. He’s using his official office and the fact that people have to travel with him, meet him, and follow him to promote his commercial enterprise, in this case, his privately owned club.”
Featured image via Twitter.