Last night President Donald Trump held his first fundraiser for his 2020 reelection campaign. The event, which will benefit the Republican National Committee and their efforts to reelect the President in 2020, once again raised ethical concerns.
The fundraiser was a dinner at Trump’s Washington DC property Trump Hotel. Seats for the event sold for at least $35,000 a piece. The event was expected to bring in at least $10 million.
It is highly unusual for a President to begin campaigning this early in his presidency. Only five months in, the President has continued to do campaign rallies throughout his administration, but this marks the campaign’s first fundraising effort.
The President’s love of campaign rallies has led many to suggest he is more interested in running a campaign than he is in running the country.
The media was barred from the event. Initially, Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that audio of the President’s remarks would be permitted. She revoked that permission shortly before the event, citing “confusion with the RNC” as the reason.
Questions surrounding President Trump’s ethics are nothing new. He is currently being sued for allegedly violating the emoluments clause of the Constitution because of his questionable ethics.
The President insists on hosting foreign leaders as well as fundraising events at his properties. This raises continuous ethics concerns.
Barack Obama’s chief ethics lawyer Norm Eisen took to Twitter and said that the fundraiser is illegal.
This is not the first time the President has been accused of violating the Constitution in this way.
Details of the event remain unclear. It is not known if the Hotel was charged or paid by the Federal Government for hosting the event.
Kathleen Clark, a law professor at Washington University, said that while the event did not break any laws, it was yet another example of the President using his office to promote his properties and brand.
Trump arrived at the event only to be met by protesters who were demonstrating the GOP and Trumpcare. Demonstrators held signs that read “Health care, not tax cuts” as well as a large effigy of the President. The bill could result in 22 million fewer Americans with healthcare.