According to The Washington Post, the couple's security detail had to outsource their toilet needs, even though Trump and Kushner’s house has 6.5 bathrooms (and six bedrooms). The final solution came in September 2017, in the form of their neighbor's basement studio and bathroom that was rented by the federal government for $3000, ultimately costing taxpayers over $100,000.
Before settling on the studio rental, agents either ended up using a porta-potty, restrooms at local businesses, or bathrooms at the nearby homes of Barack Obama or Mike Pence. White House spokesperson Judd Deere rejected the idea that the Kushners forbade agents from using their many bathrooms, claiming that the Secret Service itself decided to restrict the protective detail from the home’s facilities.
“When discussions regarding protecting their home were initially had in 2017, Ivanka and Jared made clear that their home would always be open to the incredible men and women on their detail. It was only after a decision by the [Secret Service] was made that their detail sought other accommodations,” Deere wrote to the Post in an email. “The Kushners have a tremendous amount of respect for the servicemen and women on their detail and for the United States Secret Service as a whole. Their home will always be open to them and they have immense gratitude for their service over the last four years.”
A Secret Service spokeswoman declined to comment, saying the agency “does not discuss the means, methods, or resources utilized to carry out our protective mission.”
The type of people that the Secret Service protects usually live on extensive properties where the detail can turn a garage, pool house, or another outbuilding into a command post, break room, and bathroom. “It’s the first time I ever heard of a Secret Service detail having to go to these extremes to find a bathroom,” one law enforcement official familiar with the situation told the Post. Two law enforcement officials said the Kushners' bathrooms were off-limits from the agents from the start, though it was unclear why.
After some time, the Secret Service detail was banned from using the bathroom in Obama’s garage due to an “unpleasant mess,” according to the newspaper. So in September 2017, agents found themselves knocking on Kushner’s neighbor’s door.
“I think it was very clear that they just needed a place to take a shower, take a break, use the facilities, have lunch,” said Kay Kendall, who owned the home and is chairwoman of the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities. “I’m happy to be able to have helped them.”
Kendall asked the house’s tenant—former Connecticut congressman Anthony “Toby” Moffett Jr—if she could rent it out to the Secret Service. “I told her, ‘It’s fine, if you reduce the rent,’” Moffett said about the situation.
The Post reports that the lease on the 820-square-foot basement studio began on Sept. 27, 2017, and is set to expire on Sept. 26, 2021, costing the federal government a total of $144,000.
The report sparked strong reactions online, with some people pointing out the Kushners' cruelty, while others couldn't help but wonder what went down in the Obama bathroom.