Taxpayers Billed For Trump's Mar-a-Lago Stay

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A recently released receipt reveals taxpayers paid $1,092 for one of President Donald Trump's trips to his Florida Mar-a-Lago resort.

Transparency advocacy group Property of the People obtained the March invoice before verifying it with The Washington Post.

It is said to be proof that Trump's use of the "Winter White House" is channeling taxpayer payer money toward one of his private businesses.

The hotel charges $546 per night, which means one of Trump's officials used government money to fund at least two nights there on March 3-4.

Some ethics experts say the news is troubling in more than one way.

For one thing, the action may represent a violation of the domestic emoluments clause, which forbids the president from receiving an additional salary.

For another, some wondered why the government should pay for a luxury hotel when there are cheaper ones nearby.

"The choice to stay there and have the government pay the $546-a-night rate seems imprudent," said Kathleen Clark, a Washington University law professor who specializes in ethics issues. "If it were not owned by the president, it would still seem problematic. The fact that it’s owned by the president makes it doubly problematic."

The internet certainly seems to agree with Clark's sentiments.

Many took to social media to express their outrage.

"There is absolutely no reason for any govt official to stay there, when there are perfectly decent places to stay nearby," wrote one person on The Washington Post's article about this. "This should NOT be an approved travel site."

"There should be a listing of any and all federal employees who spent $500/night for lodging in any and all hotels worldwide, not just Trump facilities," said another.

"There is no reason a Government employee has to stay at Mar-a-Lago," chimed in a third. "If the Government employee was on official travel then he should have to pay the difference between the per diem rate and what was charged."

Others thought this was proof the entire Trump administration and presidential campaign was corrupt.

"The longer these sorts of.....infractions go unchallenged and unanswered by Congress, the more I am convinced that obstruction, fraud, bribery and collusion permeates this administration and the last election," added another.

"As long as [this] administration continues to waive any sort of ethic guidelines & rules, this will be status quo. The Republicans seems to accept this as long as this President remains in office," wrote a second.

"I guess at this point, we can all surmise that the Constitution has been suspended during King Trump's reign of terror over America," noted a third.

Sources: The Washington Post, Washington Post/Facebook / Featured Image: Wally Gobetz/Flickr / Embedded Images: Jack Boucher via Wikimedia Commons, tommietheturtle via Wikimedia Commons

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