Trump Family's Frequent Trips Are Draining Secret Service Resources

Photo: AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais.
The Trump administration has a growing problem that has nothing to do with domestic or foreign policy: It can't pay its Secret Service agents.
Those employed to protect the president and those close to him have a pay cap, and more than 1,000 agents have already reached the maximum they can legally be payed for the entire year because of the overtime they've logged, USA Today first reported. The Secret Service has had money and staffing problems for a few years, but the size of Trump's family and their frequent trips have stretched its resources thin.
All of Trump's children have security details. In fact, a total of 42 people are protected under the current administration, compared to 31 during Obama's presidency, 18 of whom are in the Trump family.
And everyone in the family travels pretty frequently, which really adds up in terms of lodging and compensation for the agents assigned to protect them. Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, work in the White House and travel with the president on official government business, but they've also taken multiple personal vacations this year. They celebrated Passover in Canada, skied in Colorado in March, and went to Vermont this month — each requiring Secret Service agents to go with.
Donald Jr. and Eric Trump, who run the Trump Organization, also travel for work, including one trip to Uruguay that cost the government $100,000 in hotel rooms alone, according to USA Today.
Melania and Barron didn't move into the White House until June, requiring their own Secret Service detail in New York for the first five months of Trump's presidency.
Even Tiffany, who largely stays out of the spotlight, has taken trips abroad, one of which cost taxpayers more than $22,000, according to CBS News.
All of these security costs are in addition to the constant protection of Trump himself, which includes his frequent trips to his properties in Mar-a-Lago, FL and Bedminster, NJ. Because he visits so often, the Secret Service maintains security infrastructure in both Florida and New Jersey, and each trip to Mar-a-Lago costs the government millions (though the exact figure differs depending on who you ask).
Hiring more agents will help the Secret Service cut back on overtime pay, but as things stand now, some agents can't be paid for work they've already put in.
Hundreds of Secret Service agents reached the yearly cap on overtime pay last year, too, largely due to the increased security demand created by the 2016 election and then-president elect Trump. Congress approved a bill to ensure agents would be paid for the extra overtime, but it only applied to 2016.
Now members of Congress are looking into ways to relieve the financial burden again. And unless the Trump family cuts back on travel, the problem will continue to get worse.

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