Say say two thousand zero zero party over, oops, out of time.
So tonight I’m gonna party like it’s nineteen ninety-nine.
— “1999,” Prince
Substitute the years 2019 and 2018, and you’ll understand why President Donald Trump is following Prince’s advice and frantically partying in Mar-a-Lago this holiday season like he’s “out of time.” Because he soon might be.
With Democrats taking control of the House next month and planning investigations into the president’s murky ties with Russia and Saudi Arabia, combined with the investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller coming to a head, Trump’s free-ride-without-real-accountability nightmare is over. But ours isn’t.
Trump will jet off to his winter palace on Friday, and reportedly stay for 16 days. Despite the president’s cries about the cost of what he calls the Mueller “witch hunt,” Trump has already spent more taxpayer money on these lavish Mar-a-Lago getaways than the entire investigation has cost, according to The Washington Post.
Trump is making a fortune from publicizing his sprawling estate, and being a member of Mar-a-Lago is pricier than ever. But for some members, it’s more than worth it.
For example, if you’ve ever dreamed of trading your 9-to-5 drudgery for a glamorous foreign ambassadorship, becoming a Mar-a-Lago member would be the way to go. All you need is to beg, borrow or steal the $200,000 membership fee.
Trump has a history of nominating Mar-a-Lago club members for plum ambassadorships, the latest being Lana Marks, designer of upscale handbags. She is slated to be ambassador to South Africa, her country of birth. Trump also offered the position of ambassador to Austria to club member Patrick Park, whose greatest qualification seems to be his love for the musical “The Sound of Music.”
“I’ve seen it 75 times,” Park boasted to the Palm Beach Daily News, “and know every single word and song by heart.” Unfortunately, Park had to turn down the opportunity because of business pressures. Sad.
But they will all enjoy Trump’s lavish New Year’s Eve party, which reportedly will cost them an extra $600-$1,000 to attend. So eat, drink and be merry with your rich pals (and on our dime), Mr. President.
Because soon, the Hill will be alive with the sound of Mueller.
Playwright Mike Vogel blogs at newyorkgritty.net.