The American Cancer Society, Cleveland Clinic, and The American Friends of Magen David Adom have cancelled upcoming 2018 fundraisers previously scheduled to be held at Mar-a-Lago following President Donald Trump's remarks on Tuesday regarding the white nationalist demonstration in Charlottesville, VA, The Washington Post reports.
Though none of the charities directly mentioned the president's controversial comments, CBS News reports that the American Cancer Society cited its "values" and both the Cleveland Clinic and The American Friends of Magen David Adom came to the decision after "careful consideration" and "considerable deliberation," respectively.
"When we chose to hold our 2018 event and related dinner at Mar-a-Lago, we selected the venue based on a variety of factors, including costs and venue requirements," read a statement from the American Cancer Society obtained by CBS News. "Our values and commitment to diversity are critical as we work to address the impact of cancer in every community."
"We've held our event there for the past eight years, long before the election," Eileen Sheil, a spokeswoman for the charity, told Newsweek.
"This event raises about $1 million each year (roughly)," she added in an email to the outlet. "We are holding a date and plan to have it there."
CBS News notes the Cleveland Clinic's CEO Toby Cosgrove was part of the White House's Strategic & Policy Forum, one of the business advisory councils that was shut down earlier this week after a multitude of leaders from companies like Merck, Under Armour, 3M, General Electric, and Campbell Soup submitted their resignations after Trump claimed "many sides" were responsible for the violence in Charlottesville.
Earlier this summer, The Washington Post reported that Mar-a-Lago has seen a substantial dip in charity event bookings since Trump stepped into the Oval Office. In 2014-2015, prior to his presidential run, the golf club hosted 52 events. As of June 2017, the number of scheduled events had dropped to just 25. Some organisations, like the Leukaemia & Lymphoma Society, announced they would no longer host at Trump's "winter White House."
The Associated Press reports that some charities began debating whether to use the Palm Beach, Florida, landmark to host events as early as October 2016, after the leak of a tape from Access Hollywood that featured Trump bragging about grabbing and kissing women without their consent.