Donald Trump canceled plan to hold G7 at Doral after impeachment swing-vote Republicans objected

Donald Trump reversed his decision to hold next year’s G7 leader summit at his Trump National Doral country club after Republican senators who will sit in judgment if he’s impeached said they didn’t like it.

After watching Fox News Channel luminaries trash his choice, he called Camp David where acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney was meeting with middle-of-the-road congressional Republicans for discussions about a range of issues including Syria, trade and impeachment.

The consensus, Mulvaney told him, was that he should cancel his Florida plans, The New York Times reported. The senators in the room were moderates who could be swing votes in any impeachment tally. In order to remove Trump from office, Democrats would need 20 of them to abandon him.

Hours later the president tweeted an announcement: He would find a Plan B. 

The group told Mulvaney and other aides that a G7 at Doral ‘would be a distraction,’ according to New York Republican Rep. Peter King. A Senate aide told that some in the room at Camp David griped that they couldn’t support the president’s play at Trump-branding an international diplomatic meeting. 

Mulvaney said the following morning that Trump was genuinely surprised at the intensity of the objections.

‘At the end of the day he still considers himself to be in the hospitality business,’ He said on Fox News Sunday, ‘and he saw an opportunity to take the biggest leaders from around the world and he wanted to put on the absolute best show, the best visit that he possibly could, and he was very comfortable doing that at Doral.’

This week, the White House confirmed that Trump’s Doral resort near Miami, Florida was on the short list to be the location for the 2020 G7 summit, which the U.S. is hosting

'I think we were all surprised at the level of pushback,' Mulvaney said of the bipartisian criticism over the potential conflicts of interest with the president the event at one of his properties

‘I think we were all surprised at the level of pushback,’ Mulvaney said of the bipartisian criticism over the potential conflicts of interest with the president the event at one of his properties

‘I think we were all surprised at the level of pushback,’ he continued. ‘I think it’s the right decision to change and we’ll have to find someplace else and my guess is we’ll find someplace else the media won’t like for another reason.’

When host Chris Wallace pushed back that the president was no longer in hospitality and was now serving as president, Mulvaney dismissed it.

‘Yeah, but it’s his background,’ Mulvaney said, adding, ‘he’s in the hotel business, or at least he was before he was president.’

The White House announced Thursday that Trump sought to host next year’s Group of Seven economic summit of developed world leaders at the Trump National Doral golf resort.

Mulvaney told reporters at the time that the summit would take place at the Trump property on June 10-12, 2020, calling it ‘the perfect physical location to do this.’

He also told reporters in the White House press briefing room Thursday that the move would be ‘vastly cheaper’ than other places and that there should be no concerns that Trump would personally profit from the summit.

‘There’s no issue here on him profiting from this in any way, shape or form,’ Mulvaney said.

The announcement received widespread backlash with claims of potential conflicts of interest between the president and his personal business.

Saturday morning, just two days after announcing the summit would be held at the Doral resort, Trump announced that this would not longer be the location for the U.S. hosting world leaders next year.

He blamed the ‘media and democrat crazed and irrational hostility’ for the quick reversal – even though he received criticism even from within his own party. 

‘We will begin the search for another site, including the possibility of Camp David, immediately. Thank you!’ Trump said, bemoaning that the White House would ‘no longer consider’ his branded property for the G7.

Trump argued Doral would be 'vastly cheaper' than any other location and Mulvaney said the president would not be 'profiting from this in any way, shape or form'

Trump argued Doral would be ‘vastly cheaper’ than any other location and Mulvaney said the president would not be ‘profiting from this in any way, shape or form’

Trump’s U-turn came just 30 minutes after he tweeted his reasoning for wanting to host the summit on his own grounds.

‘I thought I was doing something very good for our Country by using Trump National Doral, in Miami, for hosting the G-7 Leaders,’ he tweeted before the reversal.

‘It is big, grand, on hundreds of acres, next to MIAMI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, has tremendous ballrooms & meeting rooms, and each delegation would have its own 50 to 70 unit building. Would set up better than other alternatives,’ he continued.

‘I announced that I would be willing to do it at NO PROFIT or, if legally permissible, at ZERO COST to the USA. But, as usual, the Hostile Media & their Democrat Partners went CRAZY!’ he concluded.

Mulvaney said that he and Trump discussed the move and the bipartisan hit the president took for the decision to put Doral on the short list.

‘He was honestly surprised at the level of pushback,’ Mulvaney said of the president. 

Mulvaney’s defense of the president comes as reports emerge that there was an internal effort in the White House to push out the acting chief of staff – an effort that was put on hold as the impeachment inquiry commenced.

A source familiar with Mulvaney’s thinking said the acting chief of staff is looking for an exit, but other people close with Mulvaney contradict this claim, insisting he does not want to leave.

He has also come under fire for essentially admitting during a press briefing this week that the president set a quid pro quo with Ukraine – the main charge Democrats cite for the impeachment proceedings.

Trump has vehemently denied that he set a quid pro quo and says his call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky over the summer was ‘perfect.’ Zelesnky has also claimed he did not feel pressure or ‘blackmailed’ into probing Biden and his son, Hunter’s business dealings in Ukraine.

However, during his news conference Thursday, Mulvaney said the U.S. requested Ukraine assist in the investigation into the handling of the Democratic National Committee server that was hacked in 2016 – and then insinuated that was the reason the administration decided to withhold funds from Ukraine.

‘That’s why we held up the money,’ Mulvaney said Thursday afternoon after listing the 2016-related investigation and Trump’s broader concerns about corruption in Ukraine.

Mulvaney has denied admitting a quid pro quo.

Mulvaney was head of the Office of Management and Budget, a post he took a month after Trump’s inauguration, and has never officially left that role as he assumed the acting position he now holds in the White House.

He took over as acting chief of staff after retired Marine Corps General John Kelly resigned from the post as chief of staff in January of this year.