I never want to hear another Republican gripe about what Democratic presidents cost the taxpayers in travel expenses ever fucking again.
I never thought it was a complaint that mattered on either side of the aisle. Presidents travel, and since they are the ostensibly the leader of the free world, security has to be crazy high. Which means that security is crazy expensive, and the president needs his people with him when traveling on business, so really, up until President Pee-Pee Party was in office, I honestly thought both sides were just being cynical, political douchebags when they’d complain about what the guy from the other party spends traveling while president.
Not anymore, though, let me tell you. First, let’s just put this whole conversation into some context. For eight years, the Republicans in this country bitched, moaned, and bellyached about how much President Obama’s traveling cost the taxpayers. They also would kvetch like none other whenever he’d step out onto a golf course. The argument, I guess, can best be summed up by this great right-wing thinker, and perhaps you’ll recognize his name when you see the tweets.
Let me just reiterate: I have never had that many fucks to give for how much time any president spends on the golf course. The only reason that Trump’s golf and travel habits bug me is that aforementioned smug, wailing and moaning that Republicans did for eight years to Obama over his. And the thing of it is — the numbers aren’t even going to be close when it’s all said done.
Today I read that Trump’s travel budget has already doubled Obama’s for his entire tenure in the Oval Office. Yes, you read that correctly.
…Trump has already spent around $21 million in taxpayer cash for his weekend travels, which also double as great advertisements for his Trump-branded properties.
In contrast, President Obama’s travel was estimated to have cost taxpayers somewhere between $85 million and $96 million, according to Public Citizen, a progressive advocacy group. Taking the highest estimate into account, that would translate into $12 million per year. (source)
We all knew, of course, that Republicans are capable of hypocrisy, and we didn’t need Trump to prove it. But, he can legitimately claim that he’s helped expose more of it than maybe anyone else in the history of the Grand Old Party.
Republicans led a witch hunt against Bill Clinton over a blowjob, meanwhile twenty years later they elected a proud and unrepentant sexual predator. Republicans bitch and moan and complain about abortion, calling it murder, and then rejoice as our missiles strike targets in Yemen, killing small children. And that’s to say nothing of the hypocrisy of claiming to be pro-life, but then being 100% on board with taking healthcare away from the sick and the poor.
But there really isn’t a more stark and easily identified case of Republican hypocrisy in the Trumpian Era than that of comparing Trump’s travel and golfing habits to Obama’s. Maybe Republicans think that since their voters avoid liberal media outlets like the plague that we do the same to theirs, but I know I don’t do that. I’ve been paying attention the last eight years, and it’s hilarious to me that Trump and his ilk haven’t even tried to hide their two-faced nature on this one.
They could have at least gotten through the first 100 days of his presidency before he started spending literally every weekend on the golf course. I mean, did they really not think that we’d call them on it? Oh wait, that’s right. They don’t fucking care, and probably don’t have to care.
As I mentioned, conservatives avoid media outlets they consider too liberal or “FAKE NEWS!” so they won’t see how much Trump’s already cost us. And if they do, they’ll equivocate. Of course they will. They’ll tell you that Obama was just golfing for leisure, while that fat, bloated, piss-haired piss of shit pseudo-tyrant in a red trucker cap’s golfing is okay because he conducts business while doing it.
But ask yourselves what Republicans would be saying about Obama, if he were conducting official presidential business on the links.
“That man has no respect for the Oval Office or he’d be in it!”
“He clearly is a lazy man who doesn’t want to actually work at his occupation!”
Okay, maybe I threw that last one in. But after seeing the confederate states once again vote in lock-step for the Muslim Ban Guy, I think I’m allowed one cheap pot shot at his racist supporters per piece.
The bottom line here is a really simple one. At the end of it all, it doesn’t matter to most Americans on either side of the aisle when the president travels or golfs. It’s not really that big a deal, in the grand scheme of things. Not when they’re trying to dismantle the EPA and hand Big Business all the power in the world to reshape our government to their liking, not ours. But that doesn’t mean this hypocrisy is irrelevant, however little it will compel Republicans to look in the mirror and change their ways.
Before I let you go, I’d like to show you the reported costs of two things we’re being told we have to cut.
- $26 million for PBS ($70 million less than Trump has already spent on golf and travel)
- $148 million for the National Endowment of the Arts (Trump’s already spent within $50 million of this amount on travel and golf in less than three months)
So remember: Your kids’ education in the arts and educational programming is less important to Trump than paying for his golf outings, which his clubs see a profit from regardless. Because “America First” doesn’t mean your America First. Just, you know, some America First. You understand, pleb.
Follow James on Twitter @JamboSchlarmbo.