After months of avoiding questions about how it was going to spend the leftovers of its record-breaking haul, President Trump’s inaugural committee filed tax documents which revealed, among other things, that it had paid nearly $26 million to an event planning firm connected to a Melania Trump advisor, according to a New York Times report.
The advisor, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, personally netted $1.62 million, an unnamed inaugural committee source told the Times.
The committee, which was led by longtime Trump friend Thomas Barrack, raised $107 million, about double what President Obama’s inaugural committee raised for his 2009 inauguration. The Trump committee had promised that the money not spent on festivities related to the 2017 inauguration would go to charities, but ultimately, less than $5 million was donated to charitable causes, according to the tax documents.
Three million dollars went to donations the Trump administration has already touted to organizations that assisted with hurricane relief last year. The other $1.75 million in charitable giving when to groups involved in the maintenance of the White House and the Naval Observatory home where the Vice President lives..
In addition to the $25.8 million that went to Wolkoff’s firm WIS Media Partners, another event planning firm that has also worked on events for Democratic politicians received $25 million, according to the New York Times.
Wolkoff’s firm was created in December 2016, according to documents surfaced by the New York Times. Wolkoff is currently a special advisor to the President’s wife. The first lady’s spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham told the Times Wolkoff is not paid in the role. Grisham also denied that Melania Trump had any involvement with the inaugural committee and how its funds were doled out, according to the Times.