President Donald Trump’s concern with reducing government spending contradicts the lifestyle he has led since moving to the White House. If he keeps his current pace for the next few years, he will be the most expensive president for taxpayers.
Add to this the conflict of interest that arises when the company providing the president’s transportation is owned by Trump himself, and when public funds are used to protect the family business.
Every time Trump travels to what he calls the “Winter White House” or “Southern White House,” in West Palm Beach Florida, it costs the treasury three million dollars.
In one month in office, Trump has made three such trips to his Mar-a-Lago golf club, totaling nine million dollars.
The figures come from a 2013 estimate made by the Government Accountability Office when former President Obama made a trip similar to Trump’s long-weekend getaway this past week.
It is inevitable to link Trump’s frequent visits to the tourist destination to the fact that the club doubled the price of its membership – to $200,000 – when he became president. This is because the facilities are rented out to private organizations with the added perk that the president may drop by to say hi.
On the other hand, First Lady Melania Trump and their son Barron’s stay in New York signifies an additional cost, as the president plans to continue traveling there often. At the moment, security alone is costing half a million dollars per day, or $183 million a year.
A president needs a logistic structure in which he is followed around at all times. In New York, the Pentagon and the Secret Service are considering renting a floor at Trump Tower at a cost of $1.5 million per year.
The president’s children normally enjoy the protection of the Secret Service. A recent trip to Uruguay made by Eric Trump to see a Trump building cost an extra $100,000 in security. Here, as in similar upcoming trips, the American people are subsidizing private travel expenses to carry out personal business benefiting Trump’s family.
This is ironic because Trump was a tough critic of the frequency and cost of Obama’s travels, even though they pale in comparison to the millionaire’s. This administration’s motto seems to be: Do as I say, not as I do.