Trump quietly hosting private White House dinner parties: report

President TrumpDonald John TrumpWinners and losers from the South Carolina debate Five takeaways from the Democratic debate Democrats duke it out in most negative debate so far MORE has been hosting a slew of private dinner parties at the White House with friends, lawmakers, conservative leaders and prominent television journalists, according to a Politico report

The dinners often serve as a means of entertainment for the president and, at times, offer him an affirmation of his own views, Politico reported.

Trump has garnered a reputation as a sort of recluse in Washington, known for fielding late-night phone calls with friends and political allies instead of throwing the high-profile events that have been common for past presidents.

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Among those who have dined with Trump at the White House are New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, media mogul Rupert Murdoch and New York real estate developer Richard LeFrak. 

Fox News host Sean Hannity has also stopped by for dinner, according to Politico. And last month, the president hosted former campaign aides Corey LewandowskiCorey R. LewandowskiThe Hill's Morning Report - Sanders repeats with NH primary win, but with narrower victory Trump campaign chief relocating to Washington: report Lewandowski decides against Senate bid MORE and David Bossie and 2020 reelection campaign manager Brad Parscale. 

The dinners have also become an informal way for Trump to hear advice and do business. This week, for example, he dined with venture capitalist Peter Thiel and Oracle Corp. co-CEO Safra Catz, whose company is vying for a multibillion-dollar Pentagon contract. 

First lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpFive takeaways from Trump's trip to India Melania Trump attends 'happiness' class during India visit The Hill's 12:30 Report: Democrats set for pivotal debate tonight MORE is not often at the dinners, Politico reported, citing administration officials. 

The dinners are also relatively regimented affairs and usually begin at 6:30 p.m. Trump occasionally gives guests tours of the Lincoln Bedroom, or shows off other features of the White House, Politico reported. 

"One of the things the president seems to miss most is the freewheeling nature of having people stop by. That is part of why he has the dinners — to stay connected,” a former White House official, who has attended some of the dinner parties, told the news outlet.

Former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaDemocrats duke it out in most negative debate so far Biden, Sanders battle over Cuba, Obama Biden attacks Sanders at debate over Obama primary MORE also hosted a number of guests at the White House, including celebrities, like actor Will, and U2 frontman Bono.

--This report was updated at 11:11 a.m.