It has been reported that the Department of Defense is going to have lease space in Trump Tower in order to set up a base of operations close to President Trump. The reason for this is to be able to accommodate the President when he is New York. This is not uncommon President Bush had a DOD operations office at his ranch, other President’s have similarly done this as well.
Military officials do travel with the President and it has been reported that the DOD is going through the “appropriate channels” to get the amount of space they need to be leased. A former DOD official Mark R. Jacobson commented on why space would be needed.
“The president really can’t be out of touch with the Pentagon or other national security officials, so you need redundant communications systems, whether it’s at Trump Tower in New York or Mar-a-Lago in Florida. Since 9/11, it’s taken on an increased sense of importance, where you may need the president in communication for a national emergency, even if they’re traveling at their home-away-from-home.”
The problem is that the Administration seems to be continually using the Presidency to gain profits for a company that benefits him or his family. For example, yesterday after Nordstroms decided to not sell Ivanka Trump’s products the President took to Twitter. Later that night Kellyanne Conway goes on media shows to tell everyone to buy Ivanka’s products. The media has also criticized President Trump for his DC hotel because it is assumed that heads of state are staying there to gain favor with the Administration. However, one does not build a hotel in DC quickly and I would guess that the groundwork for that hotel was planned well before President Trump ever decided to run.
This is not the first time a head of state has charged rent to a government department. It was reported that Vice President Joe Biden did rent a cottage on his property to the Secret Service. However, I’m sure the rent he charged was not $1.5 million a year.
This could be and should be cleared up fairly easily. Rent the space for free. If President Trump makes as much money as he claims to the rent should be covered by him. President Trump claims that he wants to cut government waste and this would be a great place to start. If the President fails to do this he deserves all the negative press he receives.