Will Donald Trump’s brand suffer after the 2016 presidential election?
By A. Big Country
The US Presidential Election is less than 2 weeks away, and it seems to be taking a decisive turn toward Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump’s mouth has brought him into, and taken him out, of the running for President. Now that it seems likely that he’s lost the race, the impact on his brand is the big next question.
We’ve already seen rates at Trump hotels drop, and vendors and individuals no longer wanting to be associated with the Trump name. And now the impact could be rippling out to his golf courses.
Three US Senators have signed a petition to have the Women’s US Open moved from Trump’s course in Bedminster, NJ.
Bob Casey (D-PA), Edward Markey (D-Mass.) and Dick Blumenthal (D-Conn.) penned a letter to the US Golf Association executive director and CEO, requesting that the premier women’s tournament be moved.
They say in the letter:
“In declining future association with a brand that degrades women, the USGA and LPGA have an opportunity to make clear to the world, and most especially young Americans, that our nation will not tolerate nor do business with any company that condones or excuses action that constitutes sexual assault.”
While the USGA has yet to comment, there was a movement last year to move a tournament being held on another Trump course after his July 2015 statements about Mexican being rapists. In the end, it was too late to move that tournament.
Of course, changing the tournament location comes with a loss of revenue to the course, which will make some money by hosting the LPGA’s highest-purse event ($4.5m in 2016). But beyond the money, the draw for courses is prestige – hosting a ‘major’ tournament. There are only 5 majors a year. And the US Women’s Open is the longest-running major on the LPGA Tour, with next year being the 67th Open. Losing the tournament would be another gut-punch to the now plummeting Trump brand.
Again, the USGA has not commented on the possibility of moving the Women’s US Open from Trump’s course, but it’s certainly the right thing to do. Trump’s general disdain for women is appalling, and it would be in poor taste for the USGA to put its players in a position to play under his name.