For Palm Beach chamber head, a flurry of headlines and one crank call

Aug 18, 2017
US President Donald J. Trump

The head of the Palm Beach Chamber of Commerce grabbed national headlines with her call for charities to boycott President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club. But the flurry of attention already seemed to be subsiding as of Friday morning.

Laurel Baker said she had not been booked for any television appearances and was the recipient of just one crank call.

“By and large, everyone has been extremely kind,” Baker said Friday.

Baker on Thursday told the Palm Beach Post that Trump’s apparent defense of neo-Nazi protesters meant nonprofits shouldn’t host fundraisers at Mar-a-Lago. She later made similar comments to other reporters.

"The glitter, the shine has gone from the club," Baker told the Washington Post, "and I can't help but think there will be more fallout from it."

She made similar comments to the Palm Beach Post.

“Personally, I do not feel that supporting him, directly or indirectly, speaks well of any organization,” Baker said Thursday.

The comments yielded one angry call from a Trump supporter who told a chamber staffer that all Democrats are Muslims, Baker said. Other interactions were more constructive.

“One member said, ‘You really shouldn’t mix politics with business,’” Baker said. “I don’t know how you can’t in this environment.”

The American Cancer Society, the Cleveland Clinic and The American Friends of Magen David Adom all canceled events at Trump’s club.