After Donald Trump’s trip to France to celebrate Bastille Day (surely he recognizes the symbolism?), he skipped returning to the White House, and immediately went to his Trump golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey. The U.S. Women’s Open golf tournament is there, which lasts throughout this weekend, and the Golfer-In-Chief wasn’t about to skip out on his 2 favorite pastimes: golf, and leering at women.
Trump has already advertised the tournament on his Twitter page, multiple times…
At this point, you are probably wondering how the hell a POTUS can get away with advertising for a golf course that he owns and profits from.
To be fair, Donald Trump was awarded the tournament in 2012, back when he had just bowed out of that year’s presidential election, and was still happily cashing NBC checks on “The Apprentice”. Upon being awarded the tournament, Trump had this to say:
“It is my great honor to have Trump National Golf Club Bedminster host the 2017 U.S. Women’s Open,” said Donald J. Trump, chairman and president of The Trump Organization. “We designed this course to appeal to and to challenge the greatest golfers in the world, and having the most prestigious event in women’s golf at this course makes our plans complete. I look forward to a truly memorable championship.”
The USGA, after Trump’s election, wanted to move the tournament to a different course. Apparently, Trump’s attorneys threatened a lawsuit if they moved, so the USGA had no choice but to hold the tournament at Bedminster.
Although, I’m not quite sure why this particular course was chosen in the first place. According to Golf Digest magazine, Trump Bedminster is a mediocre golf course, and is not even a top-10 course in New Jersey. It reportedly has a flooding problem, which helps to explain why Trump’s golf balls always end up in the water when he golfs there (or elsewhere!).
Eric Trump, son of Donald, is the one nominally in charge of the Trump Golf enterprise, when he’s not busy diverting money from cancer charities and children’s hospitals to buy oil paintings and housewares. The Trump children have had a horrible week, from Ivanka getting exposed by the Washington Post for her hypocritical business practices, to Donald Jr. lying several times about the several Russians he met with during his father’s presidential campaign. As the “Russiagate” investigation rolls on, Donald Trump is busy trying to distract us from his crimes. Whether that is awkwardly yanking on the French first lady’s arm, having bouts of amnesia, using his 2020 re-election fund to pay for his son Donald Jr’s legal fund (now there’s a sad irony), or calling the Russiagate investigation a “hoax” despite the 25+ investigators and attorneys currently working on it, Donald Trump always manages to stay in the news on a daily basis for doing things that are stupid to the point of being newsworthy.
And, of course, despite the fact that he continually called out Barack Obama for his golf trips, and the fact that he promised to not vacation as much when he became president, this is the 36th golf outing that Trump has taken since he was inaugurated 6 months ago. Trump’s vacationing has become so notorious that there are several websites dedicated to keeping track of it:
Since Trump still fully owns Trump Organization and discreetly oversees it, he profits off of U.S. taxpayers, who get charged every time he travels to a Trump hotel, golf course, or any other associated property. Between the usage of Air Force One and Marine One, the security costs, etc., it adds up very quickly. As you can see on the graphic above, he has already cost taxpayers over $46 million (in my opinion, the actual costs run much higher). And that money gets put right back into his company, which is an apparent violation of the U.S. Constitution emoluments clause. The fact that he still advertises Trump golf events on Twitter just adds insult to injury.
The “Russiagate” investigation has started to ramp up recently, so using his companies to profit off of his presidency may not seem like a big deal compared to things like espionage, conspiracy, and perjury. I assure you, however, that it will be one of the many things that will contribute to his eventual undoing.