How has President Donald Trump spent his Christmas vacation? Working, he says, but also on the golf course.
As of Monday, Trump has visited the Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach for all 11 days of his Florida vacation so far, despite severe rain nearly every day.
According to CNN’s tally, he has spent at least 251 days at a Trump golf club and 332 days at a Trump property as President.
This year alone, he’s spent at least 85 days at a golf club, despite a late start due to the government shutdown. The golf excursions have included the Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia; his Bedminister, New Jersey, golf club; Trump National Doral outside Miami; and Trump International Doonbeg in Ireland.
Trump joins a long list of presidents with a love of the game, though he is the only one who publicly — and frequently — criticized his predecessor, former President Barack Obama. Trump went after Obama’s golf habits repeatedly on Twitter and on the campaign trail.
“I mean he’s played more golf than most people on the PGA Tour, this guy,” Trump said during a 2016 campaign stop in New Hampshire. “What is it, over 300 rounds? Hey, look, it’s good. Golf is fine. But always play with leaders of countries and people that can help us! Don’t play with your friends all the time.”
Obama played 333 rounds of golf during his eight years in office, according to Mark Knoller of CBS News, who keeps detailed statistics of presidencies.
Though Trump criticized Obama for the price of his golf outings, the President’s trips to Trump properties also raises questions about the federal government spending money at his namesake properties.
During a Christmas Eve call with US service members, Trump was asked about his holiday plans.
“I’m at a place called Mar-a-Lago, we call it the southern White House,” he said. “I really pretty much work. That’s what I like to do.”
But Trump has long been known to mix business with pleasure at his golf properties both before and after assuming office.
As the US military carried out airstrikes in Iraq and Syria late Sunday morning, Trump was at his club. It’s unclear whether he was playing golf at the time, however, CNN spotted him on the 14th hole approximately two hours after the strikes.
And while the President has repeatedly railed against impeachment on Twitter during his vacation, it’s likely the topic has come up on the links, as well. His golf partners have included former Rep. Trey Gowdy on Sunday, Georgia Sen. David Perdue on Saturday, and Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham on Monday. Trump was seen in the club’s dining room with radio host Rush Limbaugh, his son Eric, and acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney the previous weekend. He’s also been joined by some less political partners, including golf pro Gene Sauers.
As for Trump’s second week of vacation, it’s likely the pattern will continue — highs in the 70s and low 80s in the forecast.