A Bull Market We Love to Hate
We’ve found a raging bull market despite the current recession: Congressional travel expenses. Lawmaker spending on overseas vaca… sorry, diplomatic excursions has nearly tripled since 2001. See for yourself:
According to a study from The Wall Street Journal, hundreds of lawmakers (and their spouses and entourages) traveled overseas last year at a record taxpayer cost of $13 million. And that doesn’t include off-budget costs like spending in war zones or borrowing government planes to jet set abroad.
Some of last year’s most diplomatically vital trips include: Five representatives checked out the Galapagos Islands to “learn about global warming.” Six senators attended the Paris Air Show. Eight lawmakers enjoyed a delightful eight-day Italian excursion. And perhaps taking the cake, the House Homeland Security Committee’s jaunt to Brazil, Argentina, Peru and Panama… pertaining to the defense of U.S. borders, we must assume.
While the official numbers aren’t out yet, the WSJ claims expenses this year appear just as outrageous. There are over 20 government employees whose sole job function is to plan congressional outings.