Trump's Trips to Mar-A-Lago Under Review
GAO to investigate security, costs to taxpayers
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 29, 2017 7:42 AM CDT
Mar-A Lago in Palm Beach, Fla.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
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(Newser) – A government watchdog will investigate the costs of President Trump’s trips to Mar-a-Lago, as well as security at the Palm Beach club after a request by Democrats. In a letter to Sen. Elizabeth Warren, one of four Democratic members of Congress to request an investigation, the Government Accountability Office says it will also review the security of presidential communications, including how Trump receives classified material at Mar-a-Lago, as well as what security measures are in place for staff members and guests, reports ABC News. Democrats had issued the request last month after a report suggested Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had discussed North Korean missile launches in front of Mar-a-Lago guests, per NPR.

"Anybody can get a membership at the club for $200,000," says Rep. Elijah Cummings, who questions what "privileges" come with the fee and if members can bring guests. Either way, Politico reports it's relatively easy to get inside Mar-a-Lago. Guests to the Palm Beach GOP Lincoln Day Dinner hosted at Mar-a-Lago on Friday, for example, needed only to buy a $300 ticket and weren't subject to security screening, though Trump's wife and son were vacationing at the club. As well as determining if the costs of Trump's Mar-a-Lago visits are "fair and reasonable" to taxpayers, the GAO says it will also review whether Trump has been donating profits from his hotels to the US Treasury, which he promised to do. (Democrats have just introduced the MAR-A-LAGO Act.)

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