President Donald Trump said via his spokesman on Monday that he wants the White House press corps to decide who will receive his salary when he donates it to an as-yet-unspecified cause at the end of the year.
“Has President Trump donated his paycheck from the month of February like he promised to do during the campaign?” a reporter asked White House press secretary Sean Spicer during his daily briefing.
“The President’s intention right now is to donate his salary at the end of the year, and he has kindly asked that you all help determine where that goes,” Spicer said. “The way that we can avoid scrutiny is to let the press corps determine where it should go.”
Spicer appeared sincere, though there was laughter from those present.
“In all seriousness, his view is, he made a pledge to the American people, he wants to donate it to charity and he’d love your help to determine where it should go,” he said.
“Might I suggest the Correspondents’ Association personnel,” a reporter joked. “Journalism scholarship.”
“That would be a great way, that would be a great way to do it,” Spicer said.
During his presidential campaign, Trump said that he would take “no salary.” After his upset victory, he reiterated that promise.
“I’m not going to take the salary. I’m not taking it,” he said in November.
While aides said that Trump would donate his salary, the White House, Treasury Department and Office of Personnel Management declined to answer an inquiry last week by MSNBC as to whether he has done so yet.