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Congress enjoys diving, snorkeling @ Great Barrier Reef, rain forest cable cars...& YOU PAID FOR IT.

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Amerigo Vespucci Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 01:48 PM
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Congress enjoys diving, snorkeling @ Great Barrier Reef, rain forest cable cars...& YOU PAID FOR IT.
AUGUST 8, 2009

Lawmakers' Global-Warming Trip Hit Tourist Hot Spots
Penguins, a Rocket-Propelled Airplane (and Tax Dollars) Also Involved

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124967502810515267.html...

By BRODY MULLINS and T.W. FARNAM

WASHINGTON -- When 10 members of Congress wanted to study climate change, they did more than just dip their toes into the subject: They went diving and snorkeling at the Great Barrier Reef. They also rode a cable car through the Australian rain forest, visited a penguin rookery and flew to the South Pole.

The 11-day trip -- with six spouses traveling along as well -- took place over New Year's 2008. Details are only now coming to light as part of a Wall Street Journal analysis piecing together the specifics of the excursion.

It's tough to calculate the travel bills racked up by members of Congress, but one thing's for sure: They use a lot of airplanes. In recent days, House of Representatives members allocated $550 million to upgrade the fleet of luxury Air Force jets used for trips like these -- even though the Defense Department says it doesn't need all the planes.

The South Pole trip, led by Rep. Brian Baird (D., Wash.), ranks among the priciest. The lawmakers reported a cost to taxpayers of $103,000.
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Eric J in MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 02:16 PM
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1. It would be worse if corporations paid for this trip.
Ideally, members of Congress would vacation using their own money, but at least if they do so with tax dollars it doesn't make them indebted to corporations.
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MichiganVote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 02:35 PM
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2. They're already indebted to corporations. They don't FEEL indebted to us.
And we let them get away with it while kids are without homes, people can't get to see a Doctor and the planet is busting to fall apart.

But so long as they can throw the auto industry under the bus, why worry? :eyes:
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Hoopla Phil Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 02:35 PM
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3. Taxpayer money should NOT pay for this!!!
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 02:39 PM
Response to Original message
4. Wall Street Journal strikes again
Did they report on these excursions for the last 8 years?

I see they did report that Feeney "re-paid the $5,643 cost of the trip to the U.S. Treasury", but didn't report the trip cost $20,000 per person.

http://mediamatters.org/research/200809250015
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