Three fundraising giants decided to pull events from President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, on Thursday, signaling a direct blowback to his business empire from his comments on Charlottesville’s (Virginia) racial unrest.
The American Cancer Society, a high-dollar client at the club since at least 2009, cited its “values and commitment to diversity” in a statement on its decision to move an upcoming fundraising gala. Another longtime Mar-a- Lago customer, the Cleveland Clinic, abruptly changed course on its winter event only days after saying it planned to continue doing business at Mar-a-Lago, a leading venue for charitable events in the posh resort town.
The American Friends of Magen David Adom, which raises money for Israel’s equivalent of the Red Cross, also said it would not hold its 2018 gala at the club “after considerable deliberation,” though it did not give a reason. The charity had one of Mar-a-Lago’s biggest events last season, with about 600 people in attendance.
The cancellations will undoubtedly squeeze revenue for the private club Trump calls the “winter White House,” where similar-size events have often brought in fees of between $100,000 and $275,000 each.
(c) 2017, The Washington Post · Drew Harwell, David A. Fahrenthold