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Major Charities are Walking Away from President Trump

20 August 2017

The research hospital had held the event at Mar-a-Lago for the past eight years.

A company spokesperson later told the Washington Post that "there were a variety of factors" involved in their decision to move the gala but wouldn't elaborate any further.

These organizations join a growing list of groups that are changing the venues for their fundraising events, many saying they want to avoid being politicized.

The Cleveland Clinic's chief executive, Toby Cosgrove, was among the business leaders on the president's Strategic and Policy Forum that agreed to disband on Wednesday. The head of the Palm Beach Chamber of Commerce, Laurel Baker, said she "can't help but think there will be more fallout" for Trump's "morally reprehensible" club, which is a member of her organization.

Nonprofits that had made the decision to pull out of Mar-a-Lago prior to Charlottesville include the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, American Humane and the MorseLife Health System.

As of now, some nonprofits are staying the course, including West Palm Beach's Kravis Center For The Performing Arts, Big Dog Ranch Rescue (Trump daughter-in-law Lara Trump is the event's chairwoman) and Leaders in Furthering Education, National Enquirer heiress Lois Pope's December 2 shindig.

More than 1,100 doctors, nurses, medical students and other OH residents signed a public letter of concern over the choice of venue.

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The Federal Emergency Management Agency plans to award $41 million as early as September 30 and no later than the end of the year, according to a memo from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

The White House referred questions to the Trump Organization, which did not immediately respond. "This is not a political statement by the Cleveland Clinic by any means". Read a Chronicle story on the split among charities over renting Mar-a-Lago, and see our database detailing groups' fundraising returns for events there.

The Salvation Army, which has held a gala at the club every year since 2014, said in a statement that it would not hold its event there "because the conversation has shifted away" from its mission of helping those in need.

According to The Post, Trump could be losing millions of dollars from these canceled events, "The cancellations hit at one of the private Florida club's top moneymakers: The club earned between $100,000 and $275,000 each from similar-sized events in the past during Palm Beach's glitzy social seasons". But the organization said "it has become increasingly clear" that hosting its fundraiser on Trump-owned property presents a "challenge" to its values.

Mar-a-Lago declined to comment for this story.

"We're looking for integrity, we're looking for honesty", she said.

Major Charities are Walking Away from President Trump