Over the weekend, left-leaning news site Politico reported on the latest Trump administration “scandal”: an Air Force crew making “an odd stop on a routine trip.”
“In early Spring of this year, an Air National Guard crew made a routine trip from the U.S. to Kuwait to deliver supplies,” Politico reported Saturday. “What wasn’t routine was where the crew stopped along the way: President Donald Trump’s Turnberry resort, about 50 miles outside Glasgow, Scotland.”
Politico went on to provide an update on the Democrat-controlled House Oversight Committee’s investigation into the “unusual stay — both en route to the Middle East and on the way back — at the luxury waterside resort.” The “unusual” Air Force crew stays, about which the committee has “yet to receive any answers from the Pentagon,” aren’t the only military expenditure issues the committee is looking into, Politico revealed:
The inquiry is part of a broader, previously unreported probe into U.S. military expenditures at and around the Trump property in Scotland. According to a letterthe panel sent to the Pentagon in June, the military has spent $11 million on fuel at the Prestwick Airport — the closest airport to Trump Turnberry — since October 2017, fuel that would be cheaper if purchased at a U.S. military base. The letter also cites a Guardian report that the airport provided cut-rate rooms and free rounds of golf at Turnberry for U.S. military members.
The report set off a series of scandalous headlines, MSNBC asking, “Why did Air Force crew stop at Trump Scottish resort?” and VICE declaring, “Your Tax Dollars Are Paying for the Air Force to Hang Out at Trump Golf Resorts.”
The report also appears to have prompted a probe by Air Force officials, as Politico reported in an update to the story: “The U.S. Air Force has ordered a world-wide review of how it chooses overnight accommodations on long flights following revelations that air crews had occasionally stayed at President Donald Trump’s Scotland resort while refueling at a small commercial airport nearby.”
The Air Force report followed a similar story involving Vice President Mike Pence, as VICE reported earlier last week. “Since Vice President Mike Pence is on government business in Dublin, Ireland, you’d think he’d stay near the city,” Vice explained. “Instead, at President Trump’s ‘suggestion,’ Pence is staying at Trump’s golf course 180 miles away in Doonbeg, Ireland, a village on the opposite coast of the country, and commute by plane — at taxpayer expense. Defending the decision to reporters on Tuesday, Pence’s chief of staff, Marc Short, clarified that the president didn’t ‘command’ the stay. It was a suggestion, Short said.”
In a pair of tweets Monday morning, President Trump addressed the mounting “scandal,” denying any role in the decisions by government employees — both the Air Force crew and Pence — to stay overnight at his resorts. While he emphasized that the decisions had “NOTHING TO DO WITH ME,” he did praise the “good taste” of those who choose to visit his luxury hotels.
“I know nothing about an Air Force plane landing at an airport (which I do not own and have nothing to do with) near Turnberry Resort (which I do own) in Scotland, and filling up with fuel, with the crew staying overnight at Turnberry (they have good taste!). NOTHING TO DO WITH ME,” he tweeted.
“I had nothing to do with the decision of our great @VP Mike Pence to stay overnight at one of the Trump owned resorts in Doonbeg, Ireland,” he added in a follow-up post. “Mike’s family has lived in Doonbeg for many years, and he thought that during his very busy European visit, he would stop and see his family!”
Prior to posting about the resort stories, Trump once again blasted away at the media for its one-sided coverage of his presidency.
“As bad as @CNN is, Comcast MSNBC is worse. Their ratings are also way down because they have lost all credibility,” he wrote Monday morning. “I believe their stories about me are not 93% negative, but actually 100% negative. They are incapable of saying anything positive, despite all of the great things that this Administration has done. They don’t talk about the great economy, the big tax and regulation cuts, the rebuilding of the Military, ‘Choice’ at our VA, our Vets, Judges and Supreme Court Justices, the Border Wall going up, lowest crime numbers, 2nd A, and so much more!”