Donald Trump's Golf Cart Rental Fees Cost Taxpayers More Than $300K: Report
President Donald Trump's frequent golf outings do not come cheap
President Donald Trump‘s frequent golf outings do not come cheap.
Trump’s domestic golf cart rentals alone have cost American taxpayers $300,675, TMZ reports, citing federal documents the outlet obtained. The Secret Service uses the golf carts to follow and protect Trump, 72.
Taxpayers have also shouldered the cost of Trump’s overseas golf games. In July, The Scotsman reported that Trump’s visit to Trump Turnberry — his Scottish resort where he squeezed in a round of golf during a two-night stay with son Eric Trump and White House staff — cost the U.S. State Department $68,800.
The president’s own clubs are charging the fees, leading to criticism that Trump is using the power of his office to profit personally.
Reached for comment about Trump’s Turnberry stay, George A. Sorial, the Trump Organization’s executive vice president and chief compliance counsel, said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE at the time that the Trump Organization didn’t profit from the stay.
“For United States government patronage, our hotels charge room rates only at cost and we do not profit from these stays,” Sorial said.
Trump’s son Eric also tweeted at the time that “while not required we have decided that for any United States Govt business, we charge our COST and do NOT profit from these stays. Much more would be spent if they stayed elsewhere.”
Trump’s golfing has generated $77 million in expenses total, TMZ and a website called Trump Golf Count claimed. The White House did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment. In July, The Washington Post took issue with an earlier Trump Golf Count estimate.
Trump’s affinity for golf is well-documented. In May, ABC News reported that Trump had visited golf courses on 102 of 493 days in office. On Saturday, he went golfing on the same day as Sen. John McCain’s funeral.
Trump criticized former president Barack Obama for playing golf on a number of occasions. In one 2014 tweet, Trump wrote, “Can you believe that,with all of the problems and difficulties facing the U.S., President Obama spent the day playing golf. Worse than Carter.”
He tweeted the next day, “We pay for Obama’s travel so he can fundraise millions so Democrats can run on lies. Then we pay for his golf.”
In August, golf icon Tiger Woods spoke about Trump at the Northern Trust. “Well, I’ve known Donald for a number of years,” Woods said, according to ASAP Sports. “We’ve played golf together. We’ve had dinner together. I’ve known him pre-presidency and obviously during his presidency.”
Trump and Woods, 42, played golf together weeks after the 2016 election and during Thanksgiving last year.
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“He’s the president of the United States,” Woods said. “You have to respect the office. No matter who is in the office, you may like, dislike personality or the politics, but we all must respect the office.”
Trump tweeted afterward, “Tiger Woods showed great class in the way he answered the question about the Office of the Presidency and me. Now they say the so-called ‘left’ is angry at him.”