Federal employee used taxpayer dollars for stay at Trump’s DC hotel: report
A General Services Administration (GSA) employee spent more than $900 in taxpayer money to stay at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., according to documents obtained by CNN.
The GSA reimbursed an employee for travel expenses under the agency’s policy, CNN reports, demonstrating the first known use of taxpayer dollars moving directly to the Trump Organization.
CNN reports that the use of the Trump International Hotel did not violate any internal GSA rules.
GSA spokeswoman Pam Dixon told CNN that employees are allowed their own discretion in choosing travel and meal arrangements while on business trips.
“GSA has not promulgated any guidance related to the use of properties or services of the Trump Organization properties,” the agency told CNN.
Trump placed his business into a trust controlled by his two adult sons upon becoming president last year after concerns over government and foreign officials frequenting the Trump properties. Critics allege Trump’s business dealings violate the emoluments clause of the Constitution.
The emoluments clause prohibits the president and federal officials from taking payments from foreign governments: “No title of nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no person holding any office of profit or trust under them, shall, without the consent of The Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or Foreign State.”
In December, a federal judge tossed out a lawsuit from Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington alleging that the president had violated the clause by accepting payments from foreign officials at his D.C. hotel.
-Updated 10:30 a.m.