News & Politics

How Much Could Gary Cohn’s Resignation Cost the Trump Hotel?

When the President accepted his top economic adviser's resignation, his hotel may have lost a customer.

Gary Cohn, outgoing economic advisor and, perhaps, outgoing hotel guest. Official White House photo by Evan Walker.

On Tuesday, the White House announced that top economic adviser Gary Cohn plans to step down after opposing President Trump’s decision to impose tariffs on steel imports. Cohn, who left Goldman Sachs in New York to join the administration last January, will likely leave the city of DC, where instead of putting down roots, he called the Trump International Hotel home, at least during weekdays. When Trump loses Cohn as a staffer, he probably loses, among other things, a guest.

So how much might Cohn’s departure cost the Trump Hotel?  Some back of the Benjamin Bar cocktail napkin math:

The White House says that when officials stay in the hotel, a group that has at times included Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon, they “have been personally paying a fair market rate.” If “fair market rate” means “the rate everyone else pays,” a Monday to Friday stay in a Deluxe Room–the cheapest available–costs $2,052.64. If Cohn stays in one of those 50 times a year, that’s a bill of $102,632 (factoring in the Stay Longer, Save More promotion, but not the occasional $140 crystal spoonful of Hungarian wine). 

A one-bedroom executive suite, booked 21 days in advance, would cost about $391,525 a year, more than 10 times the $30,000 salary Cohn accepted to work at the White House. On the other hand, it costs less than 2 percent of the $285 million severance package Cohn received when he left Goldman to join the administration.

“Per policy, we never comment, acknowledge or deny any hotel guest,” Trump Hotel Director of Sales Patricia Tang tells Washingtonian.

Contributing Editor

Amanda has contributed to Washingtonian since 2016. She has written about the right-wing media personality Britt McHenry, chronicled her night with Stormy Daniels, and come clean about owning too much stuff. She lives on H Street. She can be reached at [email protected]