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27 May, 2021 15:57

How much?! Cost revealed of Donald Trump’s attendance at UFC event – and critics will likely lose their minds

How much?! Cost revealed of Donald Trump’s attendance at UFC event – and critics will likely lose their minds

It's well known that it costs a pretty penny to sit cageside at a UFC event, but few would have predicted that the full price for Donald Trump's visit to UFC 244 reportedly ended up setting the taxpayer back more than $250,000.

Trump flew into New York City in early November 2019 to attend the fight card topped by his vocal supporter, Jorge Masvidal, who battled Nate Diaz for the honor of being named the UFC's official 'Baddest Motherf*cker' – but per federal records seen by the New York Daily News, Trump's trip to the Big Apple set the taxpayer back by just over a quarter of a million dollars.

Trump was flanked at the event by his sons Don Jr. and Eric, as well as several members of the Republican leadership and an army of secret service officials. 

However, the trip – which was described as "impromptu" – also coincided with that weekend's New York City marathon, which had led to many of the city's hotel rooms being sold out weeks and sometimes months in advance, leaving Trump and his officials to scramble to secure accommodation for the presidential visit. 

An internal email released via the Freedom of Information Act showed that hotels still hadn't been booked just three days before the visit – ensuring that the city's hotels would likely charge inflated rates.

Per the report, $224,212 was spent on accommodation for the secret service – and this is despite Trump reportedly spending just 16 hours in Manhattan, his former home before he officially recognized his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida as his permanent residence. 

Furthermore, $22,005.51 was supposedly spent on various travel expenses while almost $7,000 was spent to erect tents to act as security checkpoints close to Trump Tower, where the ex-President stayed overnight. 

It was also noted that the report was highly censored, meaning that the true cost of Trump's UFC fandom could have been well in excess of the reported figure.

At the UFC event itself, Trump was resoundingly booed by the majority of the fans in New York City when he was seen walking to his seat and also when he was displayed on the arena's big screen. 

This came just days after he was given a similar reception by baseball fans when he attended Game 5 of the World Series between the Washington Nationals and the Houston Astros. 

Trump's attendance at the event came amid a larger association with its president Dana White, who has been invited to speak at the past two Republican National Conventions and who had glowingly endorsed Trump's candidacy for re-election.

Trump had also courted the support of both Masvidal and his chief rival Colby Covington, both of whom had expressed their support for Trump's administration - effusively so in Covington's case.

Also on rt.com UFC 244: Trump tweets praise for Masvidal after fighter calls him a ‘bad motherf*cker’