Take No 'Big' Vacations
Current Status: BrokenAs of
"There's just so much to be done, so I don't think we'll be very big on vacations, no."
- Trump interview with 60 Minutes, November 2016
“I would rarely leave the White House because there’s so much work to be done... I would not be a president who took vacations. I would not be a president that takes time off.”
- Trump interview with The Hill, June 2015
After the election, advisers for Trump said he might spend most of the week at the White House, and return to Trump Tower or Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach or even his New Jersey golf course in Bedminster on the weekends.
Within two weeks of his inauguration, Trump scheduled a long weekend trip to his resort at Mar-a-Lago in Florida, a trip characterized as part-business, part-pleasure. He took three such weekend trips in a row, four out of five weekends total since taking office as of March 4th 2017. It is estimated that Trump spent nearly a quarter of his first month in office at his Mar-a-Lago resort including 25 hours of golf time.
As of March 24th 2017, his visits to Trump-owned properties increased to eight consecutive weekends including 13 golf course visits.
Given that Trump never defined what a "big" vacation is, and that his advisers told us to expect trips like this, his promise may technically be true, but the rate at which he takes such trips casts doubts given the rate at which he is incurring costs due to his travel. Within the first 80 days of his presidency, Trump had incurred costs of over $20 million in his travels to Florida.
By December 2017, almost a year into his presidency, Trump spent a total of 112 days - nearly a third of his time in office - at one of his various resort properties, including a 15 day stint at his Bedminster resort in August. The administration has retorted that these are often "working vacations," but there is little evidence to support that claim.
Given how vocal Trump was about the golf time of President Obama we are inclined to see his continued outings as contrary to his promises.