Trump Property Already Made Over $400K From The Presidency

Donald Trump rang in the New Year by already making a profit from the public office of the presidency, and he still has over two weeks until he is officially sworn in to the office. Trump made the money on New Years’ Eve night through a party at his Florida estate/hotel, the very gaudily designed Mar-a-Lago.

Unlike pretty much every other elected official, Trump’s property charged admission to their event, and the incoming president was dangled like a shiny object in front of the patrons who pulled out their checkbooks to attend this event.

According to Politico, Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida charged a reported minimum of $525 per person for a New Year’s Eve celebration that Trump and his family were set to attend. On Friday, Trump’s incoming White House press secretary told reporters that the party was “sold out,” with over 800 guests expected at the event. That’s more than $420,000 made off of dinner, dancing, and access to the incoming President of the United States.

Incoming White House Director of Strategic Communications Hope Hicks attempted to dismiss concern that the Mar-a-Lago’s pricy New Year’s Eve Party comprised yet another conflict of interest issue for Trump. “The transition is not concerned about the appearance of a conflict,” she told Politico. “This is an annual celebratory event at the private club, like others that have continued to occur since the election. Additionally, the president cannot and does not have a conflict.”

So far, the mainstream media has simply allowed Trump and his team the leeway to say “there is no conflict of interest,” in a manner that has more in common with Obi-wan Kenobi’s Jedi mind trick from Star Wars than a truly responsive political team. But very few people outside of die-hard Trump supporters and his tight inner circle actually believe that this is a credible response to a serious inquiry.

Trump and his squad will have to come up with more credible excuses – or, heaven forbid, stop being so crass and unethical – for inquiries to come from Democrats (most of them at least) and the media (maybe). It’s  probably a safe bet, though, to assume that his fellow Republicans are perfectly fine with rubber-stamping his behavior as long as he has an (R) behind his name.

Trump’s behavior on this topic also calls into question his repeated assertion that he is a billionaire ten times over. He infamously refused to reveal his tax returns, and now he says and does anything to scrounge up a few hundred or thousand dollars seemingly everywhere he can. That isn’t the behavior of a man with billions at his disposal at the drop of a hat. Is his quest for cash simply another area of vulnerability that will be exploited by either his own party, or by a foreign entity? We won’t know, at least not in the immediate future.

Featured image via Flickr