The grifting and emoluments violations just keep coming at Trump World.
Turns out the month of Trump's inauguration, January 2016, the Saudi government funded a lobbying effort by US Veterans to Washington DC. The vets were flown to DC and put up at the Trump Hotel, where they were treated to expensive rooms, multiple banquets, and extended open bars. The veterans were supposedly in town to lobby their congressional representatives to defeat a bill that the Saudis opposed, but they were given little data on the bill at hand and were often there to lobby the same member of Congress multiple times. The story was broken by David Farhenthold at The Washington Post:
“It made all the sense in the world, when we found out that the Saudis had paid for it,” said Henry Garcia, a Navy veteran from San Antonio who went on three trips. He said the organizers never said anything about Saudi Arabia when they invited him.
He believed the trips were organized by other veterans, but that puzzled him, because this group spent money like no veterans group he had ever worked with. There were private hotel rooms, open bars, free dinners. Then, Garcia said, one of the organizers who had been drinking minibar champagne mentioned a Saudi prince.
“I said, ‘Oh, we were just used to give Trump money,’ ” Garcia said.
An emoluments lawsuit is pending. Read the rest.