Trump Answers Controversy over Military Staying at His Hotel: 'They Have Good Taste'


The Air Force is using taxpayer money to review the decision.

The New York Times, The Washington Post and other mainstream media mainstays are spending valuable resources reporting on it.

Democrats on Capitol Hill are probing it.

But for President Donald Trump, the answer to why an Air National Guard crew lodged at a luxury resort in Scotland owned by the Trump Organization is a simple one:

“They have good taste!”

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That’s the latest development in a story that’s been percolating inside the Beltway in the early days of September before Congress returns to session — and Rep. Jerrold Nadler resumes his slow-motion attempts to impeach the president.

On Friday, Washington news site Politico related the story of an Air National Guard crew from Alaska’s Elmendorf Air Force Base that stopped at the Trump Turnberry, about 50 miles from the Glasgow, Scotland’s largest city.

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Some questions remain about the trip — Politico reported that the crew stayed at the Trump property both en route to Kuwait and on the return, but included an Air Force statement that the crew had stayed at a Marriott on its return trip.

The Washington Post reported that the Trump property was used only for the outgoing part of the voyage and the crew stayed at a Marriott while homeward bound.

What isn’t in question is that the plane landed at least once at the Glasgow Prestwick Airport, about 20 miles from the Trump Turnberry.

The Trump hotel also appeared to be the cheapest alternative:

“During the March 2019 stopover, the Air Force placed the crew at the Trump property after a local agent on contract with the United States government had ‘indicated that there wasn’t a room available closer,’” the Air Force said in a statement, according to The New York Times.

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The statement said the Trump property charged the Air Force $136 per room, while the Marriott rate was $161, and both were under the allowable maximum of $166, according to The Times.

But Democrats on the House Oversight Committee have other questions — like whether the Trump administration is using military funds to help prop up Trump Organization properties.

The Air Force statement reported by The Times acknowledged that there could be perception problems with the choice of accommodations, even if everything was done properly. (Vice President Mike Pence faced a similar question over his stay at a Trump hotel in Ireland in early September.)

“While initial reviews indicate that aircrew transiting through Scotland adhered to all guidance and procedures, we understand that U.S. service members lodging at higher-end accommodations, even if within government rates, might be allowable but not advisable,” said the statement issued by Air Force spokesman Brig. Gen. Edward W. Thomas Jr., The Times reported.

“Therefore, we are reviewing all associated guidance.”

And perception matters, the statement said, according to The Times.

When “aircrews follow all directives and guidance, we must still be considerate of perceptions of not being good stewards of taxpayer funds that might be created through the appearance of aircrew staying at such locations,” the statement said.

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Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro desk editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015.
Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015. Largely a product of Catholic schools, who discovered Ayn Rand in college, Joe is a lifelong newspaperman who learned enough about the trade to be skeptical of every word ever written. He was also lucky enough to have a job that didn't need a printing press to do it.