Washington: US President Donald Trump will donate his annual $400,000 (around Rs 2.6 crore) salary to charity by this year’s end, his press secretary said.
Interestingly, the press, which Trump has at various times called dishonest and disposed to reporting ‘fake news’, will get to decide where the salary goes.
During a media briefing, White House press secretary Sean Spicer confirmed that Trump’s salary will go to charity and that the reporters who cover the White house will get to decide where it goes.
“He has kindly asked that you all help determine where that goes,” Spicer said. He added, “The way that we can avoid scrutiny (over where the salary is donated) is to let the (White House) press corp determine where it should go,” eliciting laughter from the gathered reporters.
“In all seriousness, I think his view is he made a pledge to the American people he wants to donate it to charity and he’d love your help to determine where it should go,” Spicer went on to say.
During the campaign trail, Trump had vowed that he would work for free by either donating his salary or accepting the bare minimum ($1) as his income.
Trump, whose personal wealth is valued at $3.7 billion by business magazine Forbes, has been criticized for refusing to release his tax return. Trump has refused to budge on the topic even after taking office.
Trump is not the first US president to forgo his income while in White House. Herbert Hoover and John F. Kennedy also donated their presidential salaries to charity.