When it comes to The Art of the Deal, Donald Trump’s main rule seems to be: say yes to anyone who is willing to give you money. At the moment, as Mediaite reports, that means partnering with the Saudi-backed LIV Golf tournament series, which Bloomberg described as the golf world’s “biggest controversy since the Tiger Woods sex scandal.” So, of course, Trump wants in on it.
According to NBC’s Marc Caputo, Trump is set to reap some serious financial rewards by hosting LIV Golf tournaments at his eponymous golf clubs in Bedminster, New Jersey and Doral, Florida. While Trump’s golf empire in general is known to be a money loser, his Bedminster and Doral clubs in particular have taken an even harder hit in recent years. According to Caputo:
Trump’s decision to tee off with LIV highlights his close ties to Saudi Arabia; he made his first foreign visit there as president, and its wealth fund injected $2 billion into his son-in-law’s company last year. The Trump-LIV partnership also represents a measure of paybacks. The PGA Tour and PGA of America yanked tournaments from Doral and Bedminster, respectively, following bigoted remarks he made on the campaign trail in 2016 (the PGA Tour said the move was financially motivated after losing the sponsorship for the event), and then his role in inciting the mob that ransacked the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. Trump sued PGA of America and the case was settled in December.
The main objection to LIV—which has managed to steal big-name players like Phil Mickelson away from the PGA Tour by throwing millions of dollars their way—is in doing business with Saudi Arabia, which has an abominable record of human rights violations, including the murder of Saudi reporter Jamal Khashoggi. But Trump has never let a little thing like morality figure into his business decisions (or, really, any kind of decisions).
The former president will host his first LIV event later this month at Trump National Golf Club Bedminster and the competition will close out in October with a $50 million purse at Trump National Doral Miami.