Businessman Donald Trump defended his practice of importing foreign works to his club Mar-A-Lago on “Morning Joe” Thursday, arguing, “getting help in Palm Beach during the season … is almost impossible.”
Trump told Mike Barnicle during the five-month “Palm Beach Season” employers “can’t get help,” so he has to use H2B visas to import workers “from different places including Europe.”
CBS Miami broke the story late Tuesday that “Trump businesses have requested hundreds of visas in recent years claiming they were unable to find Americans willing to do even the most basic tasks.”
Mike Barnicle: Donald, you’re doing very well in Florida and you activated actually both parties in much of the country to talk about immigration over the course of your campaign. But CBS Miami this morning reports that Mar-A-Lago, your beloved Mar-A-Lago — you’ve requested anywhere from at Mar-A-Lago 70-90 H2B visas since the year 2008 to hire workers at an average pay of $10 to $12 an hour. Why would you be importing workers from overseas rather than hiring workers from Florida?
Donald Trump: Because during the season, Mar-A-Lago, it’s a seasonal job. Which is very hard to get people in Florida for seasonal jobs. Because during the season in Palm Beach, Palm Beach is probably maybe the hottest real-estate maybe in the world. And during the season in Palm Beach, it’s very, very hard to get help. … Mar-A-Lago the club is closed for the summer. You know the expression, ‘Rich people don’t like heat.’ And we close Mar-A-Lago, and we open like Oct. 1. From that, for about a five-month period during what they call the Palm Beach season, which is a big deal, you can’t get help. So we tend to get help from different places, including Europe, and we’ve been doing that. And by the way, these are all legal visas, you understand that, Mike?
Barnicle: Yeah, I do.
Trump: These are all legal visas. But we have to bring people in which tells you, I mean, you can have jobs out there in certain communities that are doing well. But in Palm Beach getting help in Palm Beach during the season is almost impossible. So we go through a very legal process, and we bring people in through legal visas.