WASHINGTON -- By Wednesday, Eric Trump will have gone to four countries on Trump company business since January 1st, each with Secret Service agents in tow.
In early January, it was a trip to Uruguay for a glitzy party to promote a new property, with a reported $100,000 in hotel bills for Secret Service and other U.S. government personnel.
Then just a few weeks after the inauguration, he flew to the Dominican Republic -- but not before Secret Service agents first went for a routine advance planning trip.
Within weeks, Eric and his brother Donald Jr. flew to Dubai for the gala opening of another Trump property.
And Tuesday night night, it’s Vancouver’s turn: a new Trump hotel that will be the city’s second-largest skyscraper. Both brothers are expected to attend, and their Secret Service protection goes with them.
The Secret Service won’t say how much all those trips cost the agency, but taxpayers are footing the bills.
The law requires protection for the president, vice president and first lady, but Secret Service coverage for adult children is optional; they could decline it. Ronald Reagan’s son Ron Reagan eventually did just that.
“The taxpayers are stuck,” said Washington University Law Professor Kathleen Clark, who teaches on ethics in government.
“The bottom line on how much it’s costing the taxpayers is absolutely something I think the public and Congress has the right to know,” Clark said.
CBS News asked the Trump Organization’s representatives numerous times if the pace of international travel is expected to slow down or if Donald Jr. or Eric Trump have reimbursed taxpayers for the costs, but received no response.
The Secret Service said it has effectively adapted to the unique challenges of each administration.
Additional photos in this story courtesy of Christian Córdoba
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