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Congress and Taxpayer Funded Trips

Members of Congress just love to use the American taxpayers as their own personal ATM. They can go to the bank and money they never earned is magically there. Overseas trips by congressman and senators have gone way up the past few years, especially since the Democrats took over control of Congress in 2006. The Wall Street Journal explains:

Spending by lawmakers on taxpayer-financed trips abroad has risen sharply in recent years, a Wall Street Journal analysis of travel records shows, involving everything from war-zone visits to trips to exotic spots such as the Galápagos Islands.

The spending on overseas travel is up almost tenfold since 1995, and has nearly tripled since 2001, according to the Journal analysis of 60,000 travel records. Hundreds of lawmakers traveled overseas in 2008 at a cost of about $13 million. That's a 50% jump since Democrats took control of Congress two years ago.

The cost of so-called congressional delegations, known among lawmakers as "codels," has risen nearly 70% since 2005, when an influence-peddling scandal led to a ban on travel funded by lobbyists, according to the data.

Politicians are arguing that it's a good use of the money because they get to learn about the world. What a scam. They could learn about the world just as well and save us a lot of money by doing a Google search. That's what the rest of us do when we want to learn about an exotic land far away.

I'm sure there are many parents who would love to send their high schoolers and college age kids overseas to learn about the world, too, but unlike the congressmen and senators, they would have to pay for it themselves and most parents don't have that kind of cash lying around, especially in an economy like we have now.

And these same politicians couldn't get their mugs on television fast enough to express their "outrage" that business executives used private jets for travel.


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Comments (4)

This isn't surprising. Ari... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

This isn't surprising. Aristocracy can ALWAYS justify the spending they do of the peasant's tribute...

I'm sure Tim, the itty bitt... (Below threshold)
Michael:

I'm sure Tim, the itty bitty lib, approves of this fine use of taxpayer dollars. If he doesn't, he'll blame it on Bush.

Awww heck why do you think ... (Below threshold)
Flu-Bird:

Awww heck why do you think their called CONgress anyway they belong behind bars at PELICAN BAY or SING SING

If a member of Congress wan... (Below threshold)
TGOBG:

If a member of Congress wants to go on a fact finding mission to another country I say fine let them go. But they will go as a normal traveler, give them and economy class ticket on a mid priced airline, make them go through the same customs and immagration lines we have to go through. Make them carry travelers checks and stay in whatever hotel they can find, and use local transportation. Also let them go with no Secret Service or handlers or whatever. You cannot get a realistic picture of the world traveling on private Jets, staying in 4 star hotels and traveling in armor plated airconditioned limos.




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