David Farenthold and his colleagues remind us again that the president most of the rest of the political press portrayed as the more honest and less corrupt candidate in the 2016 elections that Donald Trump is running an organized crime operation out of the White House:
For Trump’s club, it appeared, saying no to the Secret Service had made it a better customer. The agency was paying for rooms on nights when Trump wasn’t even visiting — to be ready just in case Trump decided to go, one former Trump administration official said.
Trump has now visited his own properties 270 times as president, according to a Washington Post tally — with another visit planned for Thursday, when he is scheduled to meet GOP donors at his Washington hotel.
Through these trips, Trump has brought the Trump Organization a stream of private revenue from federal agencies and GOP campaign groups. Federal spending records show that taxpayers have paid Trump’s businesses more than $900,000 since he took office. At least $570,000 came as a result of the president’s travel, according to a Post analysis.
Now, new federal spending documents obtained by The Post via a public-records lawsuit give more detail about how the Trump Organization charged the Secret Service — a kind of captive customer, required to follow Trump everywhere. In addition to the rentals at Mar-a-Lago, the documents show that the Trump Organization charged daily “resort fees” to Secret Service agents guarding Vice President Pence in Las Vegas and in another instance asked agents to pay a $1,300 “furniture removal charge” during a presidential visit to a Trump resort in Scotland.
In addition, campaign finance records have provided new details about the payments the Trump Organization received from GOP groups, as a result of the 37 instances in which Trump headlined a political event at one of his properties. Those visits have brought the company at least $3.8 million in fees, according to a Post analysis of campaign spending records.
Since taking office, Trump has taken other actions that have shattered his early promise to “completely isolate” himself from the Trump Organization
The administration’s response is even more telling:
On the campaign trail in 2016, Trump had offered one simple way to underline his separation from his properties: He just wouldn’t visit.
“I may never see these places again,” Trump said during a rally in August 2016. “Because I’m going to be working for you. I’m not going to have time to go play golf. Believe me.”
In response to questions for this report, White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement that Trump has “turned over the day-to-day responsibilities of running the company though he was not required to, [and] has sacrificed billions of dollars” because of discarded deals.
Deere did not directly address questions related to the second set of promises Trump made before taking office — the promises that he would not use his presidency to help the Trump Organization.
“The Washington Post is blatantly interfering with the business relationships of the Trump Organization, and it must stop,” Deere wrote in his statement. “Please be advised that we are building up a very large ‘dossier’ on the many false David Fahrenthold and others stories as they are a disgrace to journalism and the American people.”
Never rat on your friends, and always keep your mouth shut. Be a shame if something happened to your media organization.