Throughout his time in the White House, former President Donald Trump has often relied on visuals to convince the public of his business acumen or his viability to lead the country.
Whether it's his name on a building in giant gold letters or a military parade in D.C., past behavior has indicated that it's what's on the surface that matters for Trump—not the truth.
But it turns out Trump's 4th of July spectacle from last year—in which then-President Trump claimed the pandemic that's killed nearly 600 thousand Americans was "totally harmless"—is costing the Republican party some big bucks.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) said the Republican National Committee has reimbursed over $200 thousand in expenses for the Independence Day celebration. Over $40 thousand was to pay for damage done to the National Mall, primarily due to heavy machinery creating damage to the turf, as well as damages to one of the Mall's fountains.
"The multiple damages and costs incurred by the RNC highlight Trump's unabashed willingness to abuse federal land and resources for his own political gain, and the coziness between Trump's campaign and administration."
The organization went on to note that it secured the information as part of a lawsuit effort:
"CREW obtained these records as part of an ongoing lawsuit to reveal the full cost to taxpayers of Trump's rampant use of Interior resources for self-aggrandizement."
People shared CREW's outrage.
“They were careless people...they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their… https://t.co/bVgAFIyy7J— Alanna HildtArmitage (@Alanna HildtArmitage) 1622824348.0
I feel like this is an abnormal amount of damage. https://t.co/FXtVlskDQI— Jon Ott (@Jon Ott) 1622825667.0
well the #GOPTraitors at the RNC paid this bill, look at all the bills from rallies Trump just didn't pay, of cours… https://t.co/SilNzWEs6i— Spot Etal (@Spot Etal) 1622831104.0
Others weren't surprised.
Shameful. But that’s what Trump is, and always has been. And now he’s a has-been. https://t.co/G3bNkvpCi7— BringBackDecency (@BringBackDecency) 1622812318.0
Because of course... https://t.co/kI0XFbhmkT— Martina Clark | BLM 🌊 (@Martina Clark | BLM 🌊) 1622813854.0
And there is NO end to the damage he inflicted upon this nation. https://t.co/cUyCVeiFSj— DL Rotroff (@🏡) Mask up, vax up. Stay Safe!💙 (@DL Rotroff (@🏡) Mask up, vax up. Stay Safe!💙) 1622820890.0
Trump faced backlash at the time for using the White House's South Lawn for what amounted to a campaign event.