Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said during a press briefing Thursday that next year's G7 summit will be hosted at the Trump National Doral Miami resort.
"I would simply ask you all to consider the possibility that Donald Trump's brand is probably strong enough as it is. It doesn't need any more help on that. It's the most recognizable name in the English language. ... Listen, I was skeptical. I was. I was aware of the political sort of criticism we would come under for doing it at Doral. Which is why I was so surprised when the advance team called back and said this is the perfect physical location to do this. ... There's no issue here on him profiting from this in any way shape or form."
Why it matters: Throughout his presidency, Trump has faced allegations that he is using his office to enrich his own business. The resort has struggled financially since Trump took office, with its net operating income falling 69% over the past two years — in part thanks to "some negative connotation that is associated with the brand," the Washington Post reported in May.
The state of play: Mulvaney’s announcement comes as Trump is embroiled in the middle of an impeachment inquiry for allegedly pressuring the Ukrainian government to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden.
- Trump has repeatedly accused Biden of using the vice presidency to financially benefit himself and his family. Mulvaney told reporters that the difference between the Trumps and the Bidens is the fact that the "Trump family made their money before going into politics."
- Mulvaney claimed that the Trump family won't be profiting from the summit and that hosting it at Trump's resort would be cheaper than anywhere else.
Worth noting: The House Judiciary Committee has been looking into Trump’s plans to host the summit at Doral for some time as part of its ongoing investigations of Trump.