Trump Hotels Charged Secret Service Up to 5 Times the Standard Rate for Mandatory Overnight Stays: Report

During Trump's presidency, Secret Service supervisors reportedly sought out special waivers that allowed the agency to pay far more than the government-approved nightly rate for a hotel in the D.C. area

Trump International Hotel and Tower on Central Park West above Columbus Circle. Taxis and people can be seen.
Trump International Hotel. Photo: Getty

The company owned by former President Donald Trump billed the United States Secret Service as much as five times the originally agreed-upon rate for hotel rooms while the real estate magnate was in office, according to new expense reports released to Congress.

According to The Washington Post, the expense reports reveal that the Trump Organization charged the Secret Service as much as $1,185 a night for agents to stay in properties such as the Trump International Hotel in D.C.

The reports further illustrate how, during the Trump presidency, Secret Service supervisors sought out special waivers that allowed the agency to pay far more than the government-approved nightly rate for a hotel in the D.C. area, the Post reports.

In a letter sent to Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle, Rep. Carolyn Maloney — a member of the committee that reviewed the reports — called the rates charged by the Trump Organization "exorbitant," adding: "agents' frequent stays at Trump-owned properties raise significant concerns about the former President's self-dealing and may have resulted in a taxpayer-funded windfall for former President Trump's struggling businesses."

The Washington Post reported in 2020 that President Trump's private clubs and hotels had charged the Secret Service up to $650 per night while protecting the president during his routine trips to his properties while in office.

Following the Post's 2020 report, a Trump spokesperson told PEOPLE the story was "total nonsense," saying, "We provide the rooms at cost and could make far more money renting them to members or guests. To infer that we are profiting is not only inaccurate but an outright lie."

But the new expense reports paint an even starker picture, showing that Trump's company charged the Secret Service $1,160 (more than four times the government rate) in April 2017, when agents stayed to protect Eric Trump and his wife, Lara, at the Trump International Hotel in D.C. Per the Post, when Donald Trump Jr. stayed at the same D.C. property in November 2017, the Secret Service was charged $1,185 a night for his security detail to stay there.

Eric, who is both the president's son and the executive vice president of the Trump Organization, has previously disputed that the company's hotels profited during Trump's time in office, saying that any agents who traveled with his father during his time in office stayed "at our properties free."

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Speaking to the Post earlier, Eric added: "So everywhere that he goes, if he stays at one of his places, the government actually spends, meaning it saves a fortune because if they were to go to a hotel across the street, they'd be charging them $500 a night, whereas, you know we charge them, like $50."

In a new statement given to the Post, Eric doubled down on those claims, saying: "Any services rendered to the United States Secret Service or other government agencies at Trump owned properties, were at their request and were either provided at cost, heavily discounted or for free."

"The company would have been substantially better off if hospitality services were sold to full-paying guests, however, the company did whatever it took to accommodate the agencies to ensure they were able to do their jobs at the highest levels," Eric's statement continued.

The Post notes that the expense reports "do not cover all Secret Service expenses at Trump properties during his presidency and reflect only a fraction of those expenses since he left office," and that Trump visited his own eponymous properties "more than 500 times during his presidency."

Since Trump left office in Jan. 2021, the Secret Service continues to protect him, as is customary for all former presidents. Untraditionally, however, the agency continues to also pay the Trump Organization to stay at Trump-owned properties while protecting him.

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