American taxpayers footed the bill for $33,000 in Secret Service hotel rooms for 137 consecutive nights in 2017 while Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin lived in a luxury suite, the Washington Post reported Thursday.
According to federal documents, Mnuchin lived at the Trump International Hotel for several months before finally moving into a home in Washington, DC. The suite was paid for by his own funds, but the security that was to guard the New York financier was paid for on the taxpayer dime.
For the Secret Service room, the Trump hotel charged the "maximum rate that federal agencies were generally allowed to pay in 2017: $242 per night, according to the billing records." Most hotels have a "government rate" for rooms. It's unclear if the Trump hotels abide by that. The total bill came out to $33,154.
This isn't the first time Secret Service agents have been outed for spending huge sums of money at Trump properties. The department is supposed to provide a report twice a year but under the Trump administration only two reports have been filed.
"At Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club, the Secret Service was charged the $650 rate dozens of times in 2017, and a different rate, $396.15, dozens more times in 2018, according to documents from Trump’s visits," a February report revealed.
“The Secretary was not aware of what the U.S. Secret Service paid for the adjoining room,” a Treasury spokesperson said.
The Constitution is supposed to bar presidents from profiting off of the government, but Trump hasn't followed many of those norms.
"But for the Trump hotel it was also a steady rental at a time when only about 42 percent of rooms were occupied, according to previously released data," wrote the Post.
“We were not anywhere near full occupancy at the hotel,” a former hotel employee told the paper.
The last payment to the hotel was made on June 12, 2017. But other secret service payments to Trump hotels went on, to the tune of $126,000 between Jan. 2017 and Feb. 2018. They haven't explained any of the costs. However, the amount in the payments seem to be remarkably similar.
"For instance: On June 28, 2017 — a night when Trump visited the hotel for a fundraiser dinner — the Secret Service paid the hotel $33,638," said the Post. "That is an even bigger payment than the one for Room 531. It is exactly enough to rent 139 rooms at the $242 rate."