Trump’s Consolation Prize to National Park Service He Wants to Gut: His Donated Salary
President’s cuts to Interior: $1.5 billion
President’s check to Park Service: $77K
Park Ranger’s face: Priceless pic.twitter.com/5aOpOy5oMb
— Kevin M. Kruse (@KevinMKruse) April 4, 2017
Donald Trump, because he’s rich and still has access to the money from his family businesses, doesn’t need the presidential salary of $400,000 per year, so he promised repeatedly to donate it. Since Trump’s past donation history is a bit fraught, we weren’t exactly holding our breaths waiting, but he donated his first quarter salary to the National Park Service … whose budget he wants to slash by way more money.
The check went to Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, whose department oversees the National Park Service. However, Trump’s federal budget blueprint from a few weeks back proposes deep cuts to the Interior Department of 12% of their annual budget, or about $1.6 billion in total. If you notice Harpers Ferry National Historical Park Superintendent Tyrone Brandyburg doesn’t exactly look thrilled in attendance at Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s handoff/photo-op of the check, that might be why. (Or it’s just a lucky shot, since he was smiling in others, but we’re going to stick with headcanon here.)
Zinke himself wasn’t happy with Trump’s budget proposal, either, and said he’d make that known, so it’s possible that he’s glad to take the check and just hope Congress has enough sense to ignore Trump’s budget, which was largely based on his ignorant campaign rhetoric. It seems like that’s about where we are right now: Congress’s inability to turn campaign rhetoric into actual policy is suddenly our best case scenario while an unbelievably wealthy, selfish man pretends to be generous by throwing away what’s not only pennies to him, but compared to the problem he intends to create.
(image: Red Craig)
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