Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Another finger in the eye

$weet dreams: Obama billed taxpayers $295,227 to fly home to 'sleep in his own bed'


In what a taxpayer watchdog group called an unusual abuse, President Obama’s decision over Labor Day to fly home from New York to sleep in his own bed instead of overnighting and then attending the New York wedding of his chef cost Americans $295,227.
It was just one expensive leg of a Labor Day work and fun trip with an overall price tag of $1,539,402.10 in flight expenses alone — not including security costs, food, housing or those associated with his staff.
Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said, “This Labor Day back-and-forth shows President Obama seems to confuse Air Force One with Uber. President Obama abuses not only taxpayers with this unnecessary travel — he strains an already overstretched military and a Secret Service that is in crisis and can’t even guard the front door of the White House.”
According to the newly released records obtained by Judicial Watch:
— Flights for Obama’s 2014 Labor Day weekend fundraising trips to Westchester, N.Y., and Providence, R.I., cost taxpayers $527,192.50
— Transportation for Obama’s round-trip flight from D.C. to Westchester to attend a wedding cost taxpayers $358,490.90
— The flight for Obama’s trip to Milwaukee to speak at “Laborfest 2014” cost taxpayers $653,718.70
The trip began with fundraisers in the the Northeast. He started in Westchester on Aug. 29. He attended two fundraisers in New York, then one in Rhode Island.
He was supposed to fly back to nearby Westchester, spend the night, then wake to attend the wedding of Sam Kass and liberal MSNBC commentator Alex Wagner on Saturday.
At the last minute, he flew to Washington, where, his press secretary said, he could “sleep in his own bed, do a little work tomorrow, spend some time with his family, and then travel back to New York.”
Said Judicial watch, “The difference between flying to Washington, D.C., instead of New York created an additional 1.4 hours spent in Air Force One, which adds up to $295,227.80 more in taxpayer dollars.”
He ended his Labor day travels in Milwaukee on Monday, where he made a campaign speech at Laborfest 2014.
Fitton, whose group has charted presidential travel costs for years, said Congress should look into Obama’s use of Air Force One for fun and fundraising. “The new Congress could do worse than to reform presidential travel so taxpayers aren’t gouged by candidates and campaigns benefitting from the political use of Air Force One,” he said.

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