U.S. President Donald Trump has always been known in the business world even before his political career. In fact, he takes his businesses quite seriously that he has refused to sever ties with them despite the conflict it may pose.
And it seems like the said conflict of interest is already taking place as a new report suggests that Trump’s businesses are actually profiting directly from his presidency.
According to the Center for Responsive Politics, the president’s ventures have been benefiting financially from his post as the country’s commander-in-chief.
The report claimed that Trump and some Republican lawmakers have already spent over $1 million for the president’s businesses during his first year in office. Apparently, the said amount has been used mostly at Trump-branded properties, which they rented for political and fundraising events.
The outlet noted that majority of the money spent ($784, 055) came from Trump-related political committees, including his 2020 reelection campaign. Others reportedly came from the Republican National Committee and other Republican elected officials.
Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.) and Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) are among the Republicans who reportedly spent a big amount of money on Trump’s property, dropping $15,221 and $12,546, respectively.
On the other hand, no Democrats have reportedly spent money on Trump’s properties for their political events.
“Those seeking to curry favor with Trump are not only donating to his reelection campaign but holding fundraisers and galas at his resorts, private clubs and hotels — the proceeds of which benefit him and his family.”
Interestingly, the report shows that before Trump’s presidency, his properties didn’t get that many political events. In fact, in 2014 election period, the president’s properties only earned $33,926 from political events.
Recently, Trump’s businesses have been subjected to another controversy due to the newly passed tax reform bill. According to CNN, the president’s ventures “could” benefit from the new tax plan despite his earlier claims that it would cost him and his family “a fortune.”
White House press secretary Sarah Sanders pointed out in an interview that Trump is likely to “take a big hit” on the personal side but not business-wise.
Apparently, the provision “allows real estate investors to get a special 20 percent tax rate like other small businesses — even without paying significant wages to anybody, unlike other businesses.”
Given that Trump’s businesses are mostly in real estate, it is expected that he is likely to benefit from the said provision.
In the same interview, Sanders also noted that Trump currently has no plans to release his tax returns anytime soon. The press secretary reiterated that the president’s taxes are still under audit, thus making it impossible to release the data.