Donald Trump and his administration are seeking to delay efforts by Democratic lawmakers to force him to reveal how much the Secret Service spends protecting him and his family while they travel. According to a new report from The Washington Post, leaders in the Trump administration are pushing back against a bill that would force the president to detail how much the Secret Service is spending within 120 days of traveling.
Treasure Secretary Steven Mnuchin has been fighting to move the Secret Service under his umbrella, which is where it was housed from 1865 until 2003 when it was shifted to the Department of Homeland Security. As part of negotiations over the move, Democrats have said that they’ll only support the bill if it includes the provision that the Secret Service reveals its costs on the president’s travel.
Senator Dianne Feinstein from California commented on the proposed move and their desire for more transparency from the agency.
“Secretary Mnuchin came to me last year with a proposal to move the Secret Service to the Treasury Department,” Feinstein said. “As part of that effort, I proposed that the cost of presidential travel be included for greater transparency, accountability and oversight associated with protection during travel of presidents and their families.”
Mnuchin is apparently on board with the decision, but only if it doesn’t begin until 2021, the year after the upcoming presidential election, though the treasury department declined to comment.
“Conversations about the return of the Secret Service to the Treasury Department are ongoing, and we decline to comment on individual aspects of those conversations,” said a Treasury official.
Currently, the Secret Service has been late or has failed to provide reports on the costs of Trump’s travel, something that is being blamed on staffing challenges. The agency didn’t file a report in 2016 or 2017 and has been delayed in filing other reports.
— Dan Scavino Jr.???????? (@Scavino45) January 1, 2020
Trump has faced criticism after promising to “rarely leave the White House” in order to save the government money. He once claimed that former President Barack Obama was wasting taxpayer money with his travel.
However, since he took office, he has traveled extensively. The Post reports that he has taken 50 visits outside Washington in his 3 years in office. While Obama spent $96 million on travel during his two terms in office, it’s estimated that Trump exceeded that amount in just one.
Trump’s children Ivanka Trump, Donald Trump Jr., and Eric Trump, have also made numerous business trips on the taxpayers’ dime.