Trump on track to exceed Obama in spending on travel

According to a report released Friday, President Trump’s security detail for his trips to his Mar-a-Lago golf resort in Florida is draining federal coffers.

Just six months into his presidency, Trump has already spent $21 million on travel, and a Washington Post “report” from Friday revealed just one of his trips to Mar-a-Lago racked up costs greater than $1 million. The $21 million Trump has spent is higher than Obama’s total for his entire 8 years in office. In comparison, a similar trip Obama made to Florida in 2013 cost roughly $586,000.

Trump officials have defended the president’s ambitious travel schedule, vowing he isn’t vacationing on the taxpayer’s dime.

“He is not vacationing when he goes to Mar-a-Lago. The president works nonstop every day of the week, no matter where he is,” a White House spokeswoman said in February.

Mar-a-Lago’s seaside location dictates that Trump have security detail by air and by sea. For the Coast Guard, this puts pressure on already dwindling resources. Between October 2016 and March 2017, the domestic security agency spent $17.8 million on presidential security. The number marks a $2.7 million increase from the year before and a $5.1 million increase from 2015.

The frequency of Trump’s visits couldn’t come at a worse time for the Coast Guard, which is dealing with significant financial instability of its own. Much like readiness concerns voiced regarding other branches of US military, the Coast Guard claims it needs $1.5 billion just for maintenance of existing equipment.

Since his inauguration in January, Trump has spent $6.6 million of taxpayer money on travel as detailed in the Washington Post report.

 

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