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A privately owned online gift shop named the "White House Gift Shop" is accepting pre-orders for a coin commemorating former President Donald Trump’s second indictment.
The gift shop is not affiliated with the Biden administration or the White House, despite its name.
The gift shop’s name has fueled misleading claims before.
Is the White House putting out a special coin to commemorate former President Donald Trump’s indictment in a classified documents case?
Comments by U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., seemed to suggest as much.
"Now whatever you think about it, whatever party you are, you gotta admit it's poor taste, That it's capitalizing upon something without his permission, I'm sure. It's the wrong thing to do. Have a sense of decency, White House Gift Shop," he said.
In a reply to the tweet, Cassidy linked to a WhiteHouseGiftShop.com page showing that it is accepting pre-orders for a coin commemorating Trump’s second indictment.
But Cassidy failed to clarify that this online vendor has no association with the actual White House.
Although The White House Gift Shop sounds like the official gift shop of the White House, it’s not. Any historical ties it once had ended when a private company took ownership in 2012, Snopes reported.
The gift shop’s About Us page said the shop began as The White House Flower Fund, which President Harry S. Truman renamed The White House Police Benefit Fund on Sept. 9, 1946. Its objective then was to provide tokens to members who lost family members and to retiring White House Police officers.
According to its website, the gift shop was once in the White House basement but went online after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
Anthony Giannini, the shop’s CEO, told PolitiFact in 2022 that the store was fully privatized.
According to U.S. Patent and Trademark Office records, the trademarks for "White House Gift Shop" and "White House Gift Shop, Est. 1946" are owned by Giannini Strategic Enterprises.
People on official public White House tours, meanwhile, can buy souvenirs from a separate gift shop operated by The White House Historical Association.
The shop’s name has fueled misleading claims before. In 2020, Facebook posts falsely said Trump was selling coronavirus-themed commemorative coins through the White House Gift Shop. And in 2022, similar posts falsely claimed the White House made commemorative coins dedicated to Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
In both cases, such coins existed, but through the private gift shop, not the actual White House.
PolitiFact reached out to Cassidy’s campaign team but did not hear back.
Cassidy tweeted that, "The White House Gift Shop is putting out a commemorative coin for Donald Trump's indictment."
His statement is partially accurate in that a business called The White House Gift Shop is promoting the sale of coins commemorating Trump’s indictment. But Cassidy leaves out key details by failing to note that this private vendor is not associated with the actual White House.
We rate his claim Half True.
Tweet by U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, June 12, 2023
Facebook post by U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, June 12, 2023
Tweet, June 13, 2023
Tweet, June 13, 2023
PolitiFact, Commemorative Zelenskyy coins created by private gift shop, not Biden White House, April 25, 2022
PolitiFact, Gift shop selling COVID-19 coins is not from the White House, May 1, 2020
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office records, accessed June 13, 2023
The White House Gift Shop, About page, accessed June 13, 2023
The White House Gift Shop, Trump Epilogue Coin #2 In President Trump's Historic Moments Series, "The Second Indictment Of President Donald J. Trump", accessed June 13, 2023
The White House Gift Shop, Special Orders, accessed June 13, 2023
Snopes, Is the White House Gift Shop Selling Coronavirus Commemorative Coins?, April 30, 2020
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