How Much Do Trump's Golf Trips Cost? His Mar-a-Lago Visits Don't Come Cheap
In previous years, President Donald Trump made quite the show of criticizing former President Barack Obama for golfing, but since he took office in January, he's spent a good bit of time at Mar-a-Lago, his "Winter White House" golf resort in Palm Beach, Florida. After spending a fifth weekend at Mar-a-Lago since his inauguration eight-and-a-half weeks ago, many are wondering just how much Trump's golf trips cost American taxpayers.
In February, after spending 11 of his first 33 days as president at the "Winter White House," CBS estimated that Trump's first three trips to his golf resort cost taxpayers roughly $10 million, putting that figure at about $3.3 million per trip. With his fifth trip behind him, Trump has now spent an estimated $16.5 million in taxpayer dollars on traveling to Mar-a-Lago alone. Time reported that the trips have a hefty price tag for Palm Beach as well — their sheriff's department has spent about $570,000 on security for the president, not including overtime pay for officers, which totals about $60,000 per day he's there. Moreover, some businesses in Palm Beach have reported that they lose money and have to shut down when the president comes to town.
If the president continues to travel at the rate he's traveled so far, it would cost taxpayers an estimated $120.5 million in his first year alone — a figure that exceeds the $96 million the Obamas spent on travel during his entire two-term tenure.
Obama's golf outings were a major source of Trumpian Twitter rage during the 44th president's time in office — he tweeted about Obama playing golf least 15 times during his eight years in office. During a Virginia rally last year, Trump remarked that when and if he took office, he'd "be working for you," and that he's "not going to have time to go play golf." So far, he's reportedly golfed 11 times in eight weeks. By contrast, Obama didn't play for the first time as president until late April 2009.
Trump is by no means alone among presidents who loved to golf, a list that clearly includes his predecessor, who played more than 300 times while in office. The issue isn't that Trump likes to golf — it's that his criticisms of Obama golfing fly in the face of his many trips to Mar-a-Lago since taking office, and that taxpayers are footing the bill to boot. Trump's spate of golf trips seem to be yet more evidence of hypocrisy and dishonesty from the new administration.