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Former President Donald Trump has been on the campaign trail yet again, however, unlike 2016’s campaign, his most recent venues have mostly been at fairgrounds and airports, even McDonald’s.
According to a CTV News study, Trump owed more than $2 million in overtime reimbursement and other expenses by the conclusion of his presidential term in 2021.
Former Pres. Trump continues to skip out on the bill
In Warren, Michigan, a local official who requested anonymity informed The Daily Beast that the city has yet to receive reimbursement from Trump for overtime pay incurred by cops during a MAGA event on Oct. 1, 2022, at the Macomb Sports and Exhibition Center, a 2,800-seat dual arena and convention center.
“In Sioux City, Iowa, for example, the former president still owes more than $11,000 in unpaid reimbursements to the city police and fire departments from a rally he held there on Nov. 3, 2022,” the article’s author Jake Lahut wrote.
“While overtime pay to cops and firemen totaled more than $10,000 on the overall tab, Trump’s Save America PAC also rented several parking lots from the city. They failed to cover those expenses, too.”
Trump was joined at the county fairgrounds in Lorain County, Ohio, by Republican Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Jim Jordan for a rally in June 2021. Local police reported they couldn’t find any reimbursements for Trump rallies.
Trump rallies aren’t hitting the same anymore
The incidence of non-payments has been described by observers as one of the key reasons why Trump rallies are seeing a declining trend in attendance.
“When one considers how much money campaigns raise and spend, it does not seem unreasonable to expect some degree of reimbursement for such demands for service,” said Richard Myers, a Colorado police officer.
Only one of the 30 counties and towns The Daily Beast called to see if they’d been reimbursed for local cops and firefighters attending a Trump event responded saying they had–the city of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. Yet a city clerk’s officer wasn’t even sure it was Trump’s money.
“I don’t write the name, I only write the check number,” explained the official, who also asked that her complete name be withheld. She was unsure whether the reimbursement was paid for by Event Strategies, the principal vendor for Trump rallies, or if it came from someone else.
Also serving as executive director of the Major Cities Chiefs Association, Officer Myers told the Center for Public Integrity many police departments may be less than enthusiastic to join a Trump rally in the same fashion as his initial presidential run due to his growing reputation for stiffing police departments.
Trump seems to be hoping for a loyalty pledge from those sworn to protect and serve without even paying many of them for putting their lives on the line.