After promising ‘not to play much golf’, Trump takes 16 golf trips in his first 100 days – more than one a week

Mr Trump has criticised former President Barack Obama for ‘playing more golf than players in the PGA tour’

Emily Shugerman
New York
Saturday 29 April 2017 13:41
Trump's first 100 days in numbers

If Donald Trump goes golfing to celebrate his 100th day in office, it will mark his 17th golf trip in the 14 weeks since his inauguration.

Mr Trump, who regularly criticised former President Barack Obama for the amount of time he spent golfing, has so far taken 16 different trips to golf courses.

CNN reported Mr Trump had visited the golf course 13 times by 28 March. On 2 April, photographers captured the president hitting the links with Senator Paul Rand. The next weekend, pool reporters reported Mr Trump visited Trump International Golf Club in Florida. One week later, Mr Trump was back at the same course.

Many of these trips, of course, span several days. Mr Trump had spent 19 separate days at the golf course by the end of his 13th week in office, according to a New York Times tally. That puts his number of days spent on the course ahead of the past three US presidents – combined.

Mr Obama increased the number of days he spent golfing after his first 100 days, eventually racking up 333 rounds of golf in his eight years as president. If Mr Trump were to continue his golfing habit for an eight-year term, he would play more than 600.

Mr Trump tweeted 26 times about Mr Obama’s proclivity for golf during his predecessor’s terms.

“Can you believe that, with all of the problems and difficulties facing the US, President Obama spent the day playing golf.” Mr Trump tweeted in October 2014. “Worse than Carter.”

At another point, Mr Trump lamented the taxpayer expense for Mr Obama’s games, tweeting, “We pay for Obama’s travel so he can fundraise millions so Democrats can run on lies. Then we pay for his golf.”

Politico has calculated that a weekend trip to Mar-a-Lago, where Mr Trump frequently retreats to play golf, costs taxpayers about $3 million.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer has defended Mr Trump’s golf habit, claiming he uses games to foster relationships with foreign leaders.

“You saw him utilise this with Prime Minister Abe to help foster a deeper relationship in Asia and have a growing relationship that’s going to help US interests,” Mr Spicer said. “How you use the game of golf is something he’s talked about.”

Jaime Diaz, a senior writer for Golf Digest – who has hit the links with Mr Trump several times – has a different explanation for the president’s golf proclivity.

"I didn’t sense he needed to tell you how good he was when he played golf,” Mr Diaz told NPR. “I think he was confident about it and he let his actions speak for themselves.”

“In some ways, that might be his best self, out on the golf course.”

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