President Trump announced Saturday night that his administration will no longer consider his personal resort in Doral, Fla., to host the 2020 G-7 summit, and suggested he might consider Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland instead.
“Based on both Media & Democrat Crazed and Irrational Hostility, we will no longer consider Trump National Doral, Miami, as the Host Site for the G-7 in 2020,” the president tweeted. “We will begin the search for another site, including the possibility of Camp David, immediately. Thank you!”
The announcement followed earlier tweets in which he said he thought he “was doing something very good for our Country” by hosting world leaders at his Florida resort next year.
“It is big, grand, on hundreds of acres, next to MIAMI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, has tremendous ballrooms & meeting rooms, and each delegation would have its own 50 to 70 unit building,” he tweeted.
The president followed up by saying he had offered to host the summit at no profit to himself to avoid concerns about “emoluments violations.” He said if it were legally permissible, he’d offer to host the summit at no cost to the U.S.
Democratic lawmakers claimed Friday that past G-7 summits have cost “upwards of $40 million.”
“But, as usual, the Hostile Media & their Democrat Partners went CRAZY!” Trump wrote.
Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney announced Thursday that next year’s G-7 meeting would be held at Trump National Doral Golf Club June 10-12, after months of speculation.
“The president has made it clear that he doesn’t profit from being here,” Mulvaney said during the briefing. “The resort is doing it at cost. … It’s much cheaper to do it at Doral than at other sites [that were being considered.]”
Mulvaney said the decision would save taxpayers millions because the resort would provide its services at cost.
“The Trump family made their money before they went into politics,” Mulvaney added later, to assuage any accusations the president might be profiting from his office.
Trump first made the suggestion to have the 2020 G-7 at his Doral resort in August at the 2019 summit in France, sparking controversy over the ethics of a president potentially profiting from an official government event.
One day after Mulvaney’s announcement, a trio of Democratic lawmakers introduced legislation to block the president from hosting next year’s summit.
Reps. Lois Frankel from Florida, Bennie Thompson from Mississippi and Steve Cohen from Tennessee proposed the Trump’s Heist Undermines the G-7 (THUG) Act. A companion bill sponsored by Sens. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., will be introduced in the Senate, according to lawmakers.
The House bill would prohibit funding for the three-day summit in June. It would also require Trump to submit to Congress documents related to the decision to host the summit at Doral, lawmakers said.
Speculation of an emoluments violation rose another time in September after news broke that a number of Air Force flight crews had stayed at a Scottish resort owned by Trump between 2015 and 2019. An Air Force review revealed 18 percent of aircrew who stopped over in Scotland stayed at Trump’s Turnberry resort between those years, and Trump said he had no knowledge of the crews’ stays.
Multiple news outlets later reported that the arrangement for Air Force personnel to refuel in Scotland was signed during the Obama administration.