Trump is on track to spend more on travel this year than Obama did in 8 years

Trump abe golfingDonald J. Trump/FacebookPresident Donald Trump golfs with Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at his private club in Palm Beach, Florida on February 11.

Donald Trump is well on his way to spending more on travel in a year than Obama did during his eight years as president.

Citing a 2016 Government Accountability Office report, CNN found that President Barack Obama’s four-day trip to Florida in 2013 added up to $US3.6 million in Secret Service and Coast Guard costs.

While the cost of individual trips may vary, the news outlet estimated that the six weekends (21 days, in total) Trump has spent at his Mar-A-Lago estate in Florida since becoming president added up to roughly $US21.6 million.

Back in December, conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch found that Obama spent almost $US97 million on travel during his two terms as president — about $US12 million a year. The analysis included family vacations in Aspen and Martha’s Vineyard alongside work trips for trade negotiations in Cuba and an Earth Day speech in the Florida Everglades.

Palm Beach businesses were told that Trump’s weekend trips to Mar-A-Lago would end in May due to the arrival of warmer weather, and many expect him to start visiting his wife Melania and youngest son Barron at Trump Tower in New York or travelling to his golf resort in New Jersey instead.

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said April 5 that his agency will require additional funding to protect Trump, especially since he has so many family members who require Secret Service agents.

Prior to becoming president, Trump frequently criticised Obama on Twitter for taking too many taxpayer-funded vacations and once said that, as president, he was “not going to have time to go play golf.”

But a New York Times analysis found that Trump has spent 17 days of his presidency at a golf course, compared to Obama’s zero by week 12. Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton had spent zero and three days golfing by 12 weeks, respectively.

With eight more months to go until the end of 2017, Trump could reach or surpass what Obama spent on travel in eight years by December.

Read the full CNN report here »

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