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Trump will donate portion of salary to Antietam battlefield projects

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announces Wednesday that nearly $264,000 will go toward two projects at Antietam National Battlefield. (Courtesy Department of the Interior)

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump previously said he wouldn’t take his $400,000 annual salary, but federal law got in the way. As a workaround, the president promised to donate the equivalent of his paychecks to the federal government.

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Now, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced Wednesday that nearly $264,000 will go toward two projects at Antietam National Battlefield in Maryland. That figure includes Trump’s $78,333, as well as donations from both an anonymous party and three nonprofits.

And in April, press secretary Sean Spicer presented the National Park Service with a check for $78,333 — one quarter of the president’s annual take-home pay.

“I’m deeply honored and humbled to deliver the donation to Antietam National Battlefield on behalf of President Trump,” said Zinke. “The president’s donation will allow generations of Americans to learn about our history and heritage on this sacred site.”

The money will help restore the historic Newcomer House near the battle site, as well as about 5,000 feet of rail fencing.

Zinke made the announcement standing where tens of thousands of Americans fell in battle. Antietam was the site of the bloodiest one-day battle in U.S. history, claiming over 22,000 casualties on Sept. 17, 1862.

Zinke also announced $7.2 million in additional grants to help identify, preserve and protect America’s historic battlefields.


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