White House staff offered discounts at Trump's NJ golf club: report

White House staff offered discounts at Trump's NJ golf club: report
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White House staffers who displayed proof of their administration job are getting discounted merchandise from the pro shop at President TrumpDonald TrumpUS gives examples of possible sanctions relief to Iran GOP lawmaker demands review over FBI saying baseball shooting was 'suicide by cop' House passes bill aimed at stopping future Trump travel ban MORE’s Bedminster, N.J., golf club, Politico reported Monday

The news outlet, citing two staffers and a receipt it reviewed, reported that Trump administration officials get discounts ranging from 15 percent on regular merchandise to 70 percent off clearance items at the New Jersey club.

The discount amounts to the same perk given to Bedminster members who pay a reported $350,000 annually.


Politico reported that the idea to provide discounts to aides originated with the president and his daughter, Ivanka TrumpIvanka TrumpFox News's Bret Baier posts vaccination selfie Chelsea Clinton: Pics of Trump getting vaccinated would help him 'claim credit' Ivanka Trump gets vaccine, urges public to do the same MORE.

Multiple Trump aides said they were unaware of the discount available to staff, or learned of it only after paying full price for Trump-branded gear.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders declined to comment to Politico about the discount.

Ethics watchdogs raised concerns about the practice, noting that it amounts to a conflict of interest and is considered a gift if the discount is not available to all government employees.

The Politico report was published on the same day Trump departed from the Bedminster golf club, where he spent the last 10 days. Apart from Twitter, the president made few public appearances during his New Jersey vacation, though he golfed with Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamBipartisan group of senators holds immigration talks amid border surge Senate GOP keeps symbolic earmark ban Overnight Energy: Biden reportedly will pledge to halve US emissions by 2030 | Ocasio-Cortez, Markey reintroduce Green New Deal resolution MORE (R-S.C.) and hosted dinners with supporters and business leaders. 

Trump has faced scrutiny from Democrats and ethics watchdogs for his refusal to fully divest from his family business. Instead, he has placed his assets in a trust controlled by his sons, Eric TrumpEric TrumpHunter Biden blasts Trump in new book: 'A vile man with a vile mission' Sunday shows preview: Spotlight on Georgia voting law; lawmakers tackle gun violence, border surge Chicago hospital exec resigns after improper Trump Tower vaccine distribution MORE and Donald Trump Jr.Don TrumpTrump Jr. shares edited video showing father knocking Biden down with golf ball Trump: 'I can't imagine' any Republican would beat me in 2024 primary if I run Trump Jr.: There are 'plenty' of GOP incumbents who should be challenged MORE

Three separate lawsuits have been brought against the Trump administration claiming that the president is in violation of the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, which prohibits elected officials from receiving gifts or benefits from foreign governments without congressional approval.

Multiple Trump administration figures have been embroiled in ethics and spending scandals in his first 18 months in office. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom PriceThomas (Tom) Edmunds PriceA proposal to tackle congressional inside trading: Invest in the US Biden health nominee faces first Senate test Focus on cabinet nominees' effectiveness and expertise, not just ideology MORE and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott PruittEdward (Scott) Scott PruittScientific integrity, or more hot air? OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Biden proposes billions for electric vehicles, building retrofitting| EPA chief to replace Trump appointees on science advisory panels | Kerry to travel to UAE, India to discuss climate change EPA chief to replace Trump appointees on science advisory panels MORE both resigned amid complaints that included allegations of improper use of taxpayer funds.