Trump generously subsidizes Secret Service stays

Trump generously subsidizes Secret Service stays

PE Bias Grade : D

By: Allen Nitschelm on October 17, 2020 | Article Review

This is a review of the following Boston Globe Article:
Article Title Trump family trips put Secret Service cash in their bank
Date 10/13/2020
Article Link Boston Globe ( Page A2 )
Syndicated From Washington Post
Journalist Carol D. Leonnig
David A. Fahrenthold
Joshua Partlow
Article Summary

Article details how Secret Service spends money protecting the First Family at Trump-owned properties.

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The Boston Globe and other Liberal media outlets look for any angle to attack President Trump. One of these angles has been his cost of Secret-Service protection. They have criticized Trump and his family because taxpayers have supported full-time Secret Service coverage for his children, who travel a lot. Secret Service protection for the entire First Family is the law, and the high cost is understandable because there are six adults and they are involved in businesses with lots of foreign holdings. Compare this to say the Obamas, who had two underage children who mostly traveled with the family.

But this article attacks Trump on a different angle, which is that his Secret Service details are staying at Trump hotels and paying for the stays. In other words, Trump is making money off this arrangement and enriching himself at taxpayer expense. One of the pundits suggests that Trump should completely subsidize the stays, saying “They could very easily reimburse those expenses, so the federal government and the taxpayer are not on the hook for that tab.”

This is a bogus charge, in my view, and a typical example of biased media coverage. Because you can’t compare what these charges cost against not taking the trip. You must compare them to what the cost would be if the agents did not stay at Trump hotels. Would this make fiscal or security sense? And the answer is a resounding No.

But the article that I am reviewing today does not mention this issue whatsoever. It is as if the only issue is whether the agents stay at Trump properties and whether the government pays ANYTHING for the stay. Any payment could thus be construed as some form of corruption which is what an article like this is meant to imply.

Yet the President’s business spokesman (his son) has stated that it is illegal to charge the Secret Service “nothing” and they charge them the discounted cost of providing the direct service (versus the retail rate for the rooms used.) This is a generous arrangement which saves the government money. Here is the article’s quote on this issue:

In the past, Eric Trump has defended the company’s decision to charge the Secret Service for rooms at Trump properties, saying the law does not allow them to give rooms free. He has not said what law he is referring to. He has said, however, that the company charges the government very low rates — “We charge them cost, effectively housekeeping cost,’’ he said in a Fox News podcast earlier this year.

Let’s say this was serious reporting and a real issue. The solution would be to prevent the Secret Service from staying at Trump-owned properties to avoid giving the President any benefit. This would mean they would have to stay further away, they would have to rent those properties, they would have to go in advance to secure them, and they would have to spend more time going back-and-forth between the further locations and where Trump or his family was staying. In other words, it would most definitely cost more money and would introduce more security risk than getting discounted hotel rooms in the same location.

Thanks to the New York Times, we can now confidently say that President Trump is indeed extremely wealthy. He is not a “fake” Billionaire as the Left has charged. The Times’ stories about Trump’s taxes prove that he does not need the paltry income this story reports on what taxpayers pay for these stays.

Here is the first statistic the article says about Trump’s benefit:

In this way, Trump’s adult children and their families have caused the US government to spend at least $238,000 at Trump properties so far, according to Secret Service records obtained by The Washington Post.

Note that this is for at least three years and possibly closer to four (Secret Service protection for his family probably started when Trump was the Repubican nominee), which averages out to around $60,000 per year. This information undermines the premise of the article, that Trump is personally enriching himself due to these payments.

The second statistic is about what the President’s travel itself costs taxpayers in Trump-owned properties:

Instead, the Post compiled its own accounting, one receipt a time, using public-records requests and a lawsuit. After the release of new records last month, that total now stands at $1.2 million — most of which is related to Trump’s own travel, which includes more than 270 visits to his properties, according to the Post tally.

So President Trump, who appears to work 24/7 and donates his entire salary to the federal government, gets indirect payments of about $300,000 a year from his own travel.

The president’s salary currently is $400,000 per year.

So his annual salary donation more than covers the payments from the government for both his family and himself.

This is fake news and should go into the Socialist-media-Democrat Fake News Hall of Fame.

This story actually seems to confirm the opposite of its claim. President Trump generously subsidizes the Secret Service that stays at his properties while protecting the First Family. Thank you, President Trump, for saving taxpayers money.

——=——

Allen Nitschelm is publisher of PublicEditorMA.com. He critiques the Boston Globe, mostly focusing on the bias in their news reporting. News articles are graded for bias, and the website has a listing of the average bias ratings for all reporters reviewed. See our website for more information and the four categories of articles we publish.

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