White House says Trump 'develops relationships with Congress' during his many golf club visits

Mythili Sampathkumar

The White House has said US President Donald Trump has spent nearly three months at his golf clubs because he is building "deeper and better relationships with members of Congress."

Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was asked during a news conference about what the President has done during the 92 days he has visited a golf club bearing his name.

Mr Trump has been a vocal and frequent critic of his predecessor Barack Obama's golf outings.

Ms Sanders said the golf course "relationships have helped push forward the President's agenda, specifically when it comes to helping get tax reform and tax cuts passed."

"A lot of that I think and the success of that came from the strong relationships that the President has and he's played golf with a number of senators and used that time to accomplish that," Ms Sanders explained.

Mr Obama played golf 333 times during his eight years in the Oval Office according to CBS News, but current White House staff have not always confirmed that Mr Trump is playing golf while he is spending time at the clubs.

According to Politifact, a fact-checking website funded by the Tampa Bay Times newspaper Mr Trump has golfed at least 46 times in his first year.

Those only include instances with verifiable evidence of his golfing as gathered from members of the White House media pool.

At the same time in his presidency, Mr Obama had played golf 28 times.

Mr Trump is currently on pace to go to his golf clubs 480 times in eight years should he win the 2020 election.

At one point in his short time at the White House, he was on pace to hit 650 visits in a two-term presidency.

One website has been tracking how much money this is costing US taxpayers due to the travel and security measures involved. The site's count is slightly lower because it does not count nights spent at golf clubs, only full days.