Last winter, some members of the travel industry were predicting a “Trump slump” – a drop in the number of international tourists coming to the U.S. because of the election of Donald Trump to the presidency. It hasn’t happened. The latest figures from the U.S. Travel Association’s Travel Trends Index show a 5 to 7 percent growth in international travel to the U.S. compared with last year.
Political analyst Chris Begala of Begala McGrath says the idea of a “Trump slump” was silly to begin with. He says, “To believe that, for some reason, a new president is going to institute some type of massive drop-off of visitors and travel to the United States is beyond absurd and almost laughable.”
Begala says the idea is part of the media’s tendency to blame Trump, and the GOP, for everything, including a piece of the Antarctic ice shelf that recently broke off. “When some sort of glacier structure falls off into the ocean, and it’s conservatives’ and the president’s fault,” he says, “it is laughable to say that every single thing is the fault of the sitting president, Donald Trump.”
Begala says people overseas who want to travel to the U.S. aren’t overly concerned with who’s in the White House or what party is in charge. He states, “To say that people traveling around the country and around the world are going to drop off drastically because of a sitting president is just ridiculous.”
Begala also says he doesn’t believe the public is falling for claims of this nature. “I believe that Americans, the vast majority, have turned a deaf ear to that,” he says, “and this is just the rattling among just politicos and people who are obsessed with the anti-Trump movement.” Begala says he expects it to last for as long as Trump is in office.
Meanwhile, with the number of international visitors to the U.S. on the rise, some in the travel industry are starting to talk about a “Trump bump.”