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Fun With Numbers - Congressional Junket Edition

In a four-and-a-half month investigation, Marketplace, American RadioWorks, and a team of graduate students from Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism cataloged every privately sponsored trip taken by members of the House and Senate since the year 2000. Here's some interesting facts about the Congressional junkets - all of which were paid for by private groups.

Democratic Party
Percentage of seats in Congress controlled (currently): 46%
Number of trips for party members: 2729
Total spent on party members: $7,805,362.87
Percentage of total spent on party: 54.3%
Percentage of the top 100 travelers (by cost): 57%

Republican Party
Percentage of seats in Congress controlled (currently): 54%
Number of trips for party members: 2095
Total spent on party members: $6,512,990.35
Percentage of total spent on party: 45.3%
Percentage of the top 100 travelers (by cost): 43%

Bonus Stat: Tom DeLay comes in a lowly 29th on the list of top 100 Congressional trip takers, though he does score two trips in the top 5 most expensive individual trips.


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Comments (5)

Only about 5 more ethical v... (Below threshold)
JP2:

Only about 5 more ethical violations to sort through. This is good work.

-JP2

I am sure that the left win... (Below threshold)
JD:

I am sure that the left wing media, the talking heads, the NY Times editorial page, et al. will be up in arms over the amount of privately funded junkets taken by the Congressional Democrats. I am sure that places like o-dub, jabbs, media matters, etc ... will be screaming bloody murder that their people went on trips on somebody else's dime. I am sure that we will hear calls, far and wide, for all of the noted Democrats to step down from their positions. How freaking stupid of me! Remember, they live in the "reality based community". I assume there will be the same level of outrage shown as when it was disclosed that a lot of Democrats had paid a lot of their family members a lot of money on their campaign payrolls. The key to all of this is simple - Republicans - BAD.

Good question - since Democrats control neither the House or the Senate, what exactly do these lobbyists think they will get from the Democrats. It is not like they need to be lobbied to oppose a Republican proposal. That is a knee-jerk reaction for them.

Another way to slice the an... (Below threshold)
Neggy:

Another way to slice the analysis:

[Ed - snipped]

Lets look at the numbers on a per member basis (my analysis):
Democratic Party
# of seats in Congress controlled (currently): 202
Number of trips /party member: 13.51
Total spent /party member: $38,640
Percentage of total spent on party: NA
Percentage of the top 100 travelers (by cost): NA
Republican Party
# of seats in Congress controlled (currently): 231
Number of trips / party member: 9.1 (4.4 less than Demoncrats)
Total spent / party member: $28,195 ($10.5K less per member)
Percentage of total spent on party: NA
Percentage of the top 100 travelers (by cost): NA

I guess when your philosophy is that taxes are the government's money (not yours) they view lobbyists the same!

Wow, Babs Boxer has a pench... (Below threshold)

Wow, Babs Boxer has a penchant for all the exotic places. Most of the trips by everyone else I saw looked pretty boring. Her trips are worthy of envy.

Florida
Puerto Rico
Cayman Islands
Honolulu, Hawaii
Florence , Italy
Cuba
Punta Mita, Mexico
Barcelona, Spain
London
Las Vegas

I've never been to any of t... (Below threshold)
fatman:

I've never been to any of those places that Senator Babbles Boxer has been to. I wonder if she's married?




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