Politics

Taxpayers Have Paid Nearly $400,000 Just for Trump’s Golf Cart Expenses

Published on December 2, 2018 by Athena Pallas

This winter the Secret Service has allocated more than $90,000 just for golf cart rentals in one location, South Florida, near Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach, in order to accompany President Trump while he golfs, which brings the total spent at taxpayer expense just for golf cart rentals close to $400,000 since Trump was inaugurated. That amount is apparently a presidential record, one clearly of dubious distinction, because Trump has spent more than 20% of his days in office golfing. Another factor increasing the expenses for Secret Service usage of golf carts is that the golf carts they use have to be specially outfitted to go at least 5mph faster than a standard golf cart, which, purely taking a guess, is so they could outrun a standard golf cart if it were in pursuit. According to Quartz:

The US Secret Service has allocated more than $90,000 for golf cart rentals in South Florida this winter, ostensibly to protect president Donald Trump while he hits the links. According to federal spending data, the agency is set to pay a Delray Beach company as much as $92,740 between now and June for an unspecified number of “golf cars.”…In September, TMZ reported that golf cart rentals at Trump’s US clubs have so far cost taxpayers $300,675. When and if the latest contract is fully paid out, it will bring Trump’s golf cart rental expenses up to nearly $400,000 since he took office—an apparent modern record in such a short period of time, based on past presidential expenditures. Several Secret Service agents follow Trump in the carts every time he plays golf—which as president he has reportedly done 154 times, or more than 20% of the days since he took office.

Of course golf cart rental by the Secret Service is just one aspect of the expenses involved in Trump’s frequent golf outings. The total for all of Trump’s golf expenses now has reached an astonishing estimate of $83 million, according to TrumpGolfCount.com. Trump’s properties, and therefore also Trump himself, benefit financially from these visits to his golf resorts, where lodging for Trump’s Secret Service detail and for his other aides are also expenses borne by the taxpayer.

Between all the time President Trump spends at his resort properties and the amount of his so-called “Executive Time”, which is time allocated for his tweeting and watching TV news, one does wonder how much time Trump actually spends working. He certainly seems not to do the amount of reading and absorbing of information that he predecessors have routinely done.

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Featured image of Trump and Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe golfing by 内閣官房内閣広報室 – Visit to the United States: Second Day via Wikimedia Commons.