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Politics

Donald Trump Snuck Out Of Trump Tower To Go Have A Steak

The president-elect was spotted Tuesday night at a Manhattan steakhouse without telling the press pool that has been following his activities at Trump Tower.

Originally posted on
Updated on

Donald Trump was spotted Tuesday night at a Manhattan steakhouse after he unexpectedly left his now-secured home with his family.

Standing ovation and cheers at Keene's steakhouse for @realDonaldTrump

A Bloomberg reporter spotted the president-elect Tuesday night at 21 Club, adding that he arrived in the restaurant to a standing ovation.

To applause from other patrons in the Bar Room, which the restaurant describes as the "hangout of choice for America’s rich and famous," Trump said, "We'll get your taxes down. Don't worry about it."

"We'll get your taxes down—don't worry about it" POTUS-elect Trump tells diners at NYC's 21 Club—via @HallieJackson… https://t.co/V6OmT99UlC

The restaurant is four blocks away from Trump Tower.

Instagram: @meganwallwolff

For days, the press pool that travels with Trump has been frustrated in following the movements of Trump and his advisers. Though a Trump spokesperson has said he will have a traditional press pool, which provides information on all of a president's appearances and statements in public, he has already left reporters behind multiple times.

As the photo of Trump at the steakhouse spread on social media, the press pool said they had no information about the president-elect's whereabouts. They had been told earlier in the day that Trump would be not making any movements, but around 7:30 p.m., a couple of reporters leaving Trump Tower noticed a motorcade of at least a dozen vehicles and an ambulance.

By that time most reporters had left.

"We are chasing down the possibility that Donald Trump left Trump Tower without the press pool tonight and went to a steakhouse," the pool report said. "Will update as soon as I have something reportable."

The pool later updated that the block outside the restaurant was shut down by police, and reporters were standing outside. Those without New York City press passes were moved down the block.

Hope Hicks, a spokeswoman for Trump, said she "wasn't aware" of Trump's movement in advance and she had no intention of leaving "the press in the dark."

The pool described what they could see in another report.

"Our view of the restaurant is blocked by a dumpster."

Reporters outside the steakhouse showed Trump's motorcade leaving around 9:40 p.m. ET.

#Trump leaving 21 Club after dinner #NYC

Here's how it was reported by the pool:

"At 9:38pm, the pool peered around a dumpster and watched Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, get into a SUV. A fellow pooler asked if they enjoyed dinner, and Ivanka Trump smiled. Your pooler asked if Ivanka Trump knew her company sent an email promoting the bracelet she wore on '60 Minutes,' which has raised concerns and questions. She didn't respond as the door closed.

Soon after, the motorcade began rolling."

Jeff Mason, president of the White House Correspondents' Association, issued the following statement on Wednesday:

"On Tuesday President-elect Trump went out for dinner in New York without a pool of journalists in his motorcade and after reporters were advised that he was in for the night. One week after the election, it is unacceptable for the next president of the United States to travel without a regular pool to record his movements and inform the public about his whereabouts. The White House Correspondents' Association is pleased to hear reassurances by the Trump transition team that it will respect long-held traditions of press access at the White House and support a pool structure. But the time to act on that promise is now. Pool reporters are in place in New York to cover the president-elect as he assembles his new administration. It is critical that they be allowed to do their jobs. "

Claudia Koerner is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Los Angeles.

Contact Claudia Koerner at claudia.koerner@buzzfeed.com.

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