Two Cabinet members fêted Kuwait at their boss's hotel

Welcome to 1100 Pennsylvania, a newsletter devoted to President Donald Trump’s Trump International Hotel Washington, D.C. (and his other companies). President Trump, of course, still owns his businesses and can profit from them.

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Trump Cabinet members Ross and Carson fêted Kuwait at Trump’s hotel

Last night Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and HUD Secretary Ben Carson attended the Kuwaiti embassy in the United States’ national day celebration at the Trump Hotel D.C., according to a person who attended the event and social-media postings.

It marks the second year in a row Ross was present, and apparently the second consecutive night he visited his boss’s hotel (Ross is currently embroiled in ethics scandals). While no pictures of Ross there have surfaced yet, a person at the Kuwaiti party confirmed his presence to 1100 Pennsylvania. Carson was last spotted at the hotel earlier this month.

An attendee who spoke with 1100 Pennsylvania estimated 200 to 300 people attended the event. In addition to Ross, this guest spotted Deputy Secretary of State for the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Marie Royce, and military members from the United States and other countries.

Also in attendance, of course, was Ambassador Salem Al-Sabah and his wife, Rima.

A flight officer in U.S. Navy, Angela Domingos, was at the commander-in-chief’s hotel to attend a foreign government’s party. “Yes this is my job 😆,” she wrote.

And here are some other photos a guest shared privately with 1100 Pennsylvania:

Trump, Inc. spent a night at the Trump Hotel D.C.

For today’s Trump, Inc. from ProPublica and WNYC, hosts Ilya Marritz and Meg Cramer “spent a night at President Donald Trump’s hotel in Washington, D.C.—and we met lots of interesting people”:

“How a Nigerian Presidential Candidate Hired a Trump Lobbyist and Ended Up in Trump’s Lobby”

The episode does an excellent job capturing the issues regarding President Trump’s ownership of the hotel. As will be clear seconds after hitting that play button, I was there with them and feel like I fulfilled my destiny by drawing an explicit-language warning from public radio. Check out the 1100 Pennsylvania from the following morning for more details about what we saw, along with pictures and video:

Nigerian presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar checks in to Trump's hotel

And some postscripts:

Campaign expenditure

The Republican National Committee spent another $2,487.90 at Trump properties, mostly the D.C. hotel, in January 2019.

Other noteworthy sightings

The president of lobbying firm the Da Vinci Group, Mark Smith, a Trump Hotel D.C. regular, had a lovely evening with the CEO of Avella Specialty Pharmacy, John Musil, and a staff assistant for U.S. Sen. Mike Enzi (R–WY), Sean Joseph Cullen Smith (who’s the son of the lobbyist mentioned at the beginning of this entry).

The national president of the American Association of Healthcare Administrative Management, John Currier, dined at BLT Prime, which is one of his favorite restaurants in D.C. He ate with Paul Miller, a managing partner of Miller/Wenhold Capitol Strategies, “your government affairs and association management firm.” Miller also “started the National Institute for Lobbying and Ethics where he currently serves as president.”

The managing partner of Coast to Coast strategies (“Where business and government comes together”) and a former chairman of the Michigan GOP, Saulius Saul Anuzis, was completely shocked by his surprise party at the hotel.

Russian singers Victoria Sukhareva and Артём Старченко enjoyed a wonderful evening.

Four-time kickboxing world champion Emory Andrew Tate III inked an endorsement deal for digital products in the hotel’s lobby.

Other Trump Organization news

House investigations, current status (latest change, Feb. 27, 2019)

  • Financial ServicesSent an inquiry to Deutsche Bank AG on its ties to Trump, according to the bank on Jan. 24.

  • Foreign Affairs—Chair Rep. Elliot Engel (D–NY) “plans to investigate whether President Donald Trump’s businesses are driving foreign policy decisions, including whether Trump violated the emoluments clause of the Constitution in the process” per CNN on Jan. 23.

  • Intelligence—On Feb. 6, chair Rep. Adam Schiff (D–CA) issued a statement that said his committee would investigate links or coordination between the Russian government/related foreign actors and individuals associated with Trump’s businesses, as well as if foreign actors sought to compromise or hold leverage over Trump’s businesses. During an interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Feb. 10, Schiff said the committee will investigate Trump’s relationship with Deutsche Bank, a major lender to the Trump Organization. Earlier, on Jan. 24, the committee sent an inquiry to Deutsche Bank AG on its ties to Trump, according to the bank.

  • UPDATED Oversight and Reform—Chair Rep. Elijah Cummings’s (D–MD) staff “has already sent out 51 letters to government officials, the White House, and the Trump Organization asking for documents related to investigations that the committee may launch,” according to CBS News on Jan. 13. In a Feb. 15 letter to White House Counsel Pat Cipollone, Cummings said the committee received documents showing a White House attorney and one of Trump’s personal attorneys provided “false information” to the Office of Government Ethics regarding Michael Cohen’s “hush-money payments.” A Feb. 20 memo from the majority laid out the scope for the Feb. 27 hearing with Michael Cohen. Topics include the Trump Hotel D.C. And, according to The Wall Street Journal, “Cohen also will make public some of Mr. Trump’s private financial statements and allege that Mr. Trump at times inflated or deflated his net worth for business and personal purposes, including avoiding paying property taxes.” And “Cohen will also discuss a check he received in March 2017 for a $35,000 installment that was signed by Trump Organization Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg and Donald Trump Jr., the president’s eldest son.”

  • Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings, and Emergency Management—Transportation committee chair Rep. Peter DeFazio (D–OR) and subcommittee chair Dina Titus (D–NV) sent a letter to GSA administrator Emily Murphy on Jan. 22 asking for all communication between the GSA and members of the Trump family dating back to 2015, an explanation of how the hotel calculates its profits, profit statements since the hotel opened in 2016, any guidance from the White House regarding the lease, and whether or not Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner are recused from participating in decisions regarding the property. GSA has “sent a partial response and the subcommittee is reviewing it,” according to a senior House staffer familiar with the situation. When hearings begin, it is likely that Murphy will be the first person called to testify, according to a person familiar with the subcommittee’s plans.

  • Ways and Means subcommittee on Oversight—The subcommittee held its first hearing on “legislative proposals and tax law related to presidential and vice-presidential tax returns” on Feb. 7. “We will ask the question: Does the public have a need to know that a person seeking the highest office in our country obeys tax law?” said chair Rep. John Lewis (D–GA). Experts in tax law testified.

Legal cases, current status (latest change, Feb. 22, 2019)

Health inspections, current status (latest change, Aug. 10, 2018)

  • ❌Hotel: five violations on May 7, 2018; two were corrected on site

  • ❌BLT Prime and Benjamin Bar: nine violations on Aug. 10, 2018

  • ❌Sushi Nakazawa: two violations on Aug. 10, 2018

  • ✔️Banquet kitchen: no violations on Aug. 10, 2018

  • ❌Pastry kitchen: two violations on Aug. 10, 2018

  • ✔️Gift shop: no violations on May 7, 2018

  • ❌Employee kitchen and in-room dining: five violations on Aug. 10, 2018; two were corrected on site

Correction

Due to a formatting error, yesterday’s 1100 Pennsylvania was published with a couple of broken links. The web version has been corrected and those links are

One thing that has nothing to do with Trump’s businesses (I think, tough to tell sometimes!)

“They think they know you, Lionel Messi” by Rowan Ricardo Phillips for The Paris Review

Thanks for reading. If you like what you see, tell someone—and support this work by becoming a paying member ($5/month or $50/year). If you’ve been forwarded this newsletter, subscribe for yourself at zacheverson.substack.com. Questions? Read our FAQ/manifesto. Tips or feedback? Contact me, Zach Everson, securely via email at 1100Pennsylvania@protonmail.com or on Signal at 202.804.2744.