Trump used the G-7 summit to announce his plan to enrich himself further by holding the 2020 G-7 summit at his resort in Doral, Florida.
“They love the location of the hotel,” Trump said on Monday, referring to other world leaders. “We haven’t found anything that’s even close to competing with it. Really you can be there in a matter of minutes after you land.”
As he appeared next to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Trump used the international event to tout the size of his resort and what the Washington Post described as “a long commercial of sorts for the property.”
Trump also touted the possibility of holding the summit on his property during a press conference with reporters on Monday.
“I’m not going to make any money, in my opinion,” he said, denying the fact that he will make money if the summit is held at his resort. Trump touted the “bungalows” at the facility, as well as how much parking is available and its proximity to the airport.
“In this case, Trump is using his power as president to compel foreign officials — the six other leaders and their entourages — into becoming his customers,” the Post noted.
Trump has reportedly been tilting the scales for where to hold the G-7 conference in favor of his property for some time.
Hosting the summit at his resort would funnel money into Trump’s personal accounts because unlike other presidents he has not divested from his private holdings after taking office. Since Trump took the presidency, his properties have experienced increased patronage by foreign governments, private business interests, and the Republican Party.
The money spent there by those entities has added to Trump’s wealth, as has his use of the presidency to promote his properties.
Trump earned $76 million from the Doral property in 2018. However, the resort is also struggling, like many of his holdings and properties have been since he became president.
“In a meeting with a magistrate for the Miami-Dade Value Adjustment Board in December 2018, a consultant hired by the Trump Organization said the hotel is ‘severely under-performing,'” the Miami Herald reported on Monday.
The hotel has a lower occupancy rate than its competitors and revenue has fallen 18% between 2015 and 2017.
The PGA tour left Doral after Trump was sworn in, and the Miami Heat pulled its tournament from the location as well.
All the more reason to try to host a major event.
Previously, Trump used an international event to prop up his property in Doonbeg, Ireland. In June, he went hundreds of miles away from the base of his activity in Europe to visit the resort, racking up taxpayer spending.
Trump insisted that the deviation was “convenient,” justifying the use of the presidency to give the resort international exposure.
Trump’s properties have suffered as companies and organizations seek to distance themselves from his unpopular presidency. Forcing world leaders to travel to his struggling resort is one way to give the property a boost.
Published with permission of The American Independent.