PALM BEACH — President Donald Trump, whose supporters delight in praising his so-called business acumen, has shown once again that he doesn’t know the value of a dollar.
Reports indicate that Trump has racked up a staggering $137,505 golf cart bill to accommodate his Secret Service protection at his golf courses since taking office in January.
The large figure includes a $61,960 contract for golf cart use at Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach. The contract was just signed on September 29th and covers cart service through late May of 2018.
A contract that pricey and with that sort of longevity sends a clear message: Don’t expect the expensive Florida golfing weekends to stop in 2018.
Trump has been repeatedly reamed by critics for the cost to taxpayers of flying and maintaining his entourage to Mar-a-Lago through the colder months, and for security issues arising therefrom. The criticisms, it seems, have fallen on deaf ears.
“There’s a question about how fast Trump is racking up bills that the taxpayers have to pay, which are largely trips to his hotels and his golf courses,” said Harrell Kirstein, the communications director for American Bridge, the liberal PAC that called attention to the exorbitant spending.
Trump owns two other golf courses in Florida (a “Trump National” course in each of Jupiter and Doral) and a course in Bedminster, New Jersey that he has frequently visited in recent months.
It’s worth noting Trump is not legally permitted to pay for any of the Secret Service’s needs for his protection out of his own pocket. He could certainly, however, limit the costly excursions, or at a minimum display enough of a sense of optics to not continually patronize his own establishments in what can only be described as a blatantly self-serving manner.
Of course, the cart rentals are just the tip of the iceberg. Also related to Trump’s seeming addiction to golfing is another recent Secret Service contract, this one for the use of a portable luxury bathroom from Sanitary Solutions to the tune of $3,300. What’s more, his trip to Jersey City on Sunday to watch the Presidents Cup involved the installation and subsequent removal of bulletproof glass at a price-tag of $15,600.
Perhaps he simply plans to have the federal government declare bankruptcy; that would be a page from his usual playbook.