Donald Trump clicked “like” on a tweet that connected the owner of a controversial massage parlor in Florida to him and other top Republicans at Mar-a-Lago, which could deepen the controversy surrounding the president.
Late on Saturday night, Trump appeared to “like” a Twitter post from the news magazine Mother Jones, which linked to a story about Li Yang, the founder of a Florida spa that was in the center of a recent police sting for prostitution and a human trafficking ring. Yang was the former owner of the same spa where New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was busted, and though she has since sold that location, she still owns a number of other massage parlors, identified online as locations where customers can exchange cash for sex acts.
A Twitter account that tracks the activity of Trump family members noticed that Trump liked a tweet for the story titled, “A Florida massage parlor owner has been selling Chinese execs access to Trump at Mar-a-Lago,” an expose that seemed quite damaging to Trump. In the story, Mother Jones found that Li Yang was advertising services to Chinese nationals to help them get close to Trump and his family, and photos shared on her company’s website showed that it was quite successful. Yang was able to help clients attend lush parties with Trump and his family, bringing them into close contact with the president’s inner circle.
There had already been evidence that wealthy Chinese business leaders were using American middlemen to get close to Trump, and paying top prices for it. Yahoo Finance reported that Huachu Tang, owner of a Chinese electric car company, flew 17 Chinese nationals to attend the New Year’s Eve party at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort, and said he used an American marketing company to set up the trip for him. Though Tang speaks no English, he attended the swanky party alongside top Trump administration officials — though the president himself had to cancel and remain in Washington amid the government shutdown. It was not clear if Tang used Li Yang’s company to get close to Trump.
A Florida massage parlor owner has been selling Chinese execs access to Trump at Mar-a-Lago https://t.co/mA8HL74pnq— Mother Jones (@MotherJones) March 9, 2019
Trump himself was photographed with Li Yang at a Super Bowl party last month, which took place just weeks before Kraft would be busted for allegedly visiting the spa and paying for sex acts.
It was not clear if Donald Trump intentionally liked the story, or simply clicked as he was scrolling through, but the action shows that the president could have some level of concern over the stories connecting him to Li Yang.