For President Donald Trump, the campaign never ended. Since filing paperwork within hours of his inauguration declaring eligibility for 2020, he’s been holding rallies in the states he won in November and constantly rehashing his Electoral College victory.
In keeping with this theme, Trump will be officially kicking off his reelection bid with a major fundraiser next week, less than six months into his first term. (For comparison, President Obama didn’t headline his first reelection fundraiser until April 2011.) Trump is holding his first fundraiser in the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., which he has refused to give up ownership of while in office. That ensures that every advertisement for (and article about) the fundraiser doubles as a promotion for the hotel, and likely means that those attending will be spending money that goes to his company, the Trump Organization.
This is far from the first time that Trump has visited one of his businesses since taking office. The president has spent many of his weekends as president—even those during which he was meeting with foreign dignitaries—at one of his properties. For the first several weeks, his destination of choice was Mar-a-Lago, his resort in Palm Beach, where he posed for several pictures with paying guests, including once while reading classified briefing materials in an outdoor dining area. More recently, he’s been spending time at his golf course in Bedminster, New Jersey, which at one point was actively advertising the president’s presence as an attraction for couples considering getting married on the property. This tendency has made it difficult to separate Trump’s behavior as president from his role as owner of the Trump Organization, with the former sometimes seeming to be a means of advertising the latter.