In June, Palmer Report told you that Cheapskate-in-Chief Donald Trump has been busy discovering new ways to be a deadbeat since ascending to a position that used to be thought of as requiring the highest level of responsibility and accountability. One way in which Trump has managed to stiff people while in office is by holding political rallies in different cities and then ignoring the cities’ attempts to get his campaign to reimburse them for the police and other public safety expenses they have incurred.
One of the cities Trump refused to pay was El Paso, Texas, for a rally he held there back in February. Trump’s racist and hate-filled event cost El Paso $470,417.05. By contrast, Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke promptly reimbursed the city $21,021 for the rally that he held there on the same day. But even more than the monetary cost, Trump’s rhetoric also helped inspire the horrific mass shooting that shocked the city this weekend.
Ignoring bills doesn’t make them magically disappear—even if you’re the President of the United States. In fact, nonpayment usually triggers penalties that raise the balance even higher. After Trump failed to pay his bill on time, El Paso offered him the benefit of the doubt, sending his campaign a letter that the payment is “extremely past due” yet “[we] realize this may be an oversight on your part,” according to the Texas Tribune. Trump still did not respond, and so El Paso slapped his campaign with a hefty 21% late fee in accordance with the city’s procedures.
Trump’s total bill now stands at $569,204.63. Trump still hasn’t paid a penny of it, and there is no sign he will do so anytime soon. Yet, Trump plans to return to El Paso tomorrow to supposedly offer comfort in the wake of the shooting, despite pleas from lawmakers and residents to stay away. As O’Rourke told the El Paso Times yesterday, “He’s helped to create what we saw in El Paso on Saturday. He’s helped to produce the suffering that we are experiencing right now. This community needs to heal.”
By continuing to be delinquent, Trump is insulting the people of El Paso, leaving them to foot the bill for his hate speech. Even the city’s Republican mayor, Dee Margo, who has agreed to welcome Trump tomorrow, did not offer a full embrace. Margo made clear that he “will continue to challenge any harmful and inaccurate statements made about El Paso” and that his city “will not allow anyone to portray El Paso in a way that is not consistent with our history and values.” If Deadbeat Don wants the people of El Paso to believe that he really cares about them, he might want to hand the mayor that long overdue check.