By Talia Kaplan
Published October 20, 2019
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee said President Trump “made the right move” when he announced that his administration will no longer consider hosting the 2020 G-7 summit at his personal resort in Doral, Fla.
Speaking on “Fox & Friends” on Sunday Huckabee said, “They [Democrats] went berserk over this.”
“I think the president made the right move to say we are not going to go there. It’s just something he doesn’t need to add to the plate. His plate’s overwhelmed with things he’s being criticized for.”
Trump announced on Saturday night that he was scrapping the plans and suggested he might consider Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland instead.
"Based on both Media & Democrat Crazed and Irrational Hostility, we will no longer consider Trump National Doral, Miami, as the Host Site for the G-7 in 2020," the president tweeted. "We will begin the search for another site, including the possibility of Camp David, immediately."
The announcement followed earlier tweets in which he said he thought he "was doing something very good for our Country" by hosting world leaders at his Florida resort next year.
“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," Trump tweeted.
The president followed up by saying he had offered to host the summit at no profit to himself to avoid concerns about “emoluments violations.” He said if it were legally permissible, he’d offer to host the summit at no cost to the U.S.
Democratic lawmakers claimed Friday that past G-7 summits have cost "upwards of $40 million."
Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney announced Thursday that next year’s G-7 meeting would be held at Trump National Doral Golf Club June 10-12, after months of speculation.
Mulvaney said the decision would save taxpayers millions because the resort would provide its services at cost.
“The Trump family made their money before they went into politics,” Mulvaney added later, to assuage any accusations the president might be profiting from his office.
Trump first made the suggestion to have the 2020 G-7 at his Doral resort in August at the 2019 summit in France, sparking controversy over the ethics of a president potentially profiting from an official government event.
One day after Mulvaney’s announcement, a trio of Democratic lawmakers introduced legislation to block the president from hosting next year’s summit.
Reps. Lois Frankel from Florida, Bennie Thompson from Mississippi and Steve Cohen from Tennessee proposed the Trump’s Heist Undermines the G-7 (THUG) Act. A companion bill sponsored by Sens. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., will be introduced in the Senate, according to lawmakers.
The House bill would prohibit funding for the three-day summit in June. It would also require Trump to submit to Congress any documents related to the decision to host the summit at Doral, lawmakers said.
On Sunday, Huckabee also weighed in on the media blasting the plan to host the 2020 G-7 summit at the Trump National Doral Miami resort.
“For them [the media] to try to make it that Donald Trump was even considering Doral because he was going to feather his own nest, my gosh, the man gives away every single penny of his entire presidential salary. He’s a billionaire,” Huckabee said. “He doesn’t need the revenue from a G-7 conference to be able to pay his electric bill next month. This is absurd.”
He went on to say, “The president is a fighter. He fights the right fight. Sometimes you just say, ‘This fight isn’t worth the trouble. Let me use my energy to fight something that matters to the American people.’”
“So now the press will have to find something else and, trust me, they will. It doesn’t matter what this president does, they’re going to find something they don’t like,” Huckabee said.
Fox News’ Morgan Phillips, Melissa Leon and Andrew O'Reilly contributed to this report.