Air Force Investigation Finds 'There Was No Violation of Anything' When Personnel Stayed at Trump Resort
The establishment media pounced last month after discovering that some Air Force personnel had stayed at a Trump Organization-owned resort in Scotland while traveling on official military business.
But the results of an internal travel log investigation reveal the Air Force crews followed established procedures and did nothing wrong, according to an Air Force general.
“The [investigation] will show that the policies or procedures we had in place for both using civil airfields and lodging, and the crews [decisions] aligned with [current] policy,” the branch’s head of Air Mobility Command, Gen. Maryanne Miller, who reviewed the investigation, approved it and passed it up the ladder, told Military.com.
Politico was the first among the first outlets to uncover the so-called scandal.
The outlet reported last month that in March, the Alaska-based crew of a C-17 military transport plane stayed at President Donald Trump’s Turnberry resort in Scotland on the way to and on the way back from a routine trip to Kuwait.
“Since April, the House Oversight Committee has been investigating why” that happened, according to Politico.
“The inquiry is part of a broader, previously unreported probe into U.S. military expenditures at and around the Trump property in Scotland. According to a letter the panel sent to the Pentagon in June, the military has spent $11 million on fuel at the Prestwick Airport — the closest airport to Trump Turnberry — since October 2017, fuel that would be cheaper if purchased at a U.S. military base,” the outlet added.
It was actually in the summer of 2016, near the tail-end of the Obama administration, that the Defense Logistics Agency signed a formal deal to refuel at Prestwick, The New York Times reported.
And in the vast majority of cases between 2015 and 2019, Air Force crews on layovers in the area did not stay at the Trump-owned Turnberry resort, the Air Force’s internal investigation found.
“If you look at Prestwick and you look at the rules for lodging that our crews abide by, 77 percent of the crews stayed right around there,” Miller told Military.com.
Seventeen percent of the crews booked stays about 30 miles away in Glasgow, while just 6 percent stayed at Turnberry.
“They rolled to Turnberry only because others weren’t available,” Miller said. “Turnberry is not a first option. You end up rolling down [there] as a solution.”
“There was no violation of anything. There was nothing that was out of alignment with all of that; and we even looked at the perception side of things, and the crews just did exactly what they were supposed to do.”
Miller’s comments are in line with the results of the Air Force’s preliminary review as reported last month by Fox News.
A U.S. official told Fox at the time that the Air Force looked into “the vast majority [of] the 659 overnight stays” near Prestwick Airport between 2015 and 2019, and that “approximately 6 percent of those crews stayed at the Trump Turnberry.”
“As a practice, we generally send aircrews to the closest, most suitable accommodations within the government hotel rate,” the official said. “The review also indicated that about 75 percent of the crews stayed in the immediate vicinity of the airfield and 18 percent stayed in Glasgow.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.