By Olivia Pan, Opinions Editor
“Can you believe that, with all of the problems and difficulties facing the U.S., President Obama spent the day playing golf?” – President Trump stated this about his predecessor who played exactly one round of golf and took one day off in his first 100 days as President.
Whether you are a Trump supporter or a Trump detractor, we are all taxpayers. Well, I am not officially one just yet, but I will be, and I certainly know many of my family and friends who are actively paying taxes. They are not happy campers right now, and some of them even voted for Trump. We tried to vote them off the island when we knew but they wouldn’t go.
We have installed a president, and by extension his family, who spend like there is no tomorrow. That is all well and good until that lavish spending is now on your dime, the dime of the American taxpayer.
According to the Chicago Tribune, political fact check and numerous other sources, including the White House, Trump has spent 23 of his first 84 days in office (not counting the Easter weekend) at his country club. Many of those outings were spent golfing. The cart rentals alone cost the U.S. taxpayers a total $35K. Can you imagine that? You barely make $35K working your night shift at 7 Eleven and your tax dollars went to pay for rich people’s golf carts, and that was only in the first few months of this presidency. You better get a second job to pay for this first family’s habits.
Now let’s really break it down: Obama spent approximately $97 million over two terms (eight years) on travel, some official, some leisure, and some a combination of both. Judicial Watch and other organizations track these numbers. Trump has spent “seven of his thirteen weekends as president,” at Mar-a-Lago resort, which is costing taxpayers an estimated $3.6 million per trip. That number does not include all secret service costs related to the same.
According to recent investigations by the Washington Post and Judicial Watch (a conservative leaning watch group), Trump and co. have already racked up a $10-15 million bill for sitting at the country club pre-Easter. This, from the man who once called Obama’s travel costs “unbelievable.” In fact, Trump and his family are expected to surpass Obama’s total travel expenses for his eight years as president, in just seven to ten months. It is estimated that this lavish travel and accommodations for other Trump family members, including trips to Dubai to provide security for unrelated private Trump family business, will cost the American taxpayer hundreds of millions of their hard earned tax dollars. Hundreds of millions.
Oh, and now the pretty icing on the cake for the taxpayer: We are also paying over $500,000 a day in tax dollars to provide security for the First Lady and her son Barron. This security is for our reluctant FLOTUS, Melania, the pretty wife who looks as though she would rather be at a Barneys sale with a defunct credit card than playing a role in this “Alice in Wonderland” administration.
So, let’s take inventory: a “winter White House,” a real White House, and the hiding place of the woman who almost got away (you can still escape, Melania, so hang in there). It costs a lot of dough to keep this three-ring White House going.
What I sincerely want to know is: Where is the outrage now Republicans? You crucified our black president for virtually every move he made. I will not ignore the fact that race played into that treatment. If you do ignore that, you have ignored real-life facts. We have gotten very adept at that as a country lately. It’s unfair that our former president couldn’t even put Dijon mustard on a burger without criticism from the right, while Trump is allowed to waste millions of taxpayers’ dollars and neglect his position as president without facing any backlash from conservatives.
The fact is, Trump’s weekend Mar-a-Lago trips are not being used to conduct business. Even when he recklessly entertains dignitaries there he is in breach of every security standard (oh, remember Hil’s emails?). Let’s have an international crisis discussed in front of every woman at the club who can afford to wear Lilly Pulitzer, duh. Oh, and if you are pretty he will take a picture with you.
He has simply been avoiding the monumental responsibilities that come with being President of the United States. Before taking office, Trump was quoted as saying, “I’m going to be working for you, and I’m not going to have time to go play golf,” but he does have time to take pictures with pretty women at the club, and of course golf. Well dang it, he is a multi-tasker. He golfs, takes pics with pretty women, exposes our national security issues to anyone with a buck to join this Vegas looking club, and is costing us a fortune in taxes, taxes, and more taxes. I grew up being taught that taxes were to benefit the people. I never understood that in America, the taxes would only benefit the First Family.
Photo credits: Huffington Post