House Speaker Nancy Pelosi delayed the State of the Union, so President Trump clapped back by canceling Pelosi’s overseas trip on government funds.
It’s been a back and forth circus between Trump and Democrats — who refuse to agree to the president’s need for border wall funding — so now we’re at a point in time where government is shutdown, federal employees aren’t getting paid, and it has a lot of people wondering.
If government is shutdown, then why is Pelosi about to travel with other Democrats overseas?
Why run up the tab on Congressional Delegations (CODEL) expenses when Pelosi can be home helping the country’s government reopen?
Some other folks took their thought process a little deeper and wondered about Pelosi and how she spends government funds.
Some Americans want to know if Pelosi is taking advantage of government funds and using taxpayer money in ways that some might consider abusive.
Judicial Watch dug up some interesting information showing that Pelosi apparently has a long history of using taxpayer funds to enjoy lavish getaways:
In response to a series of requests for military aircraft, one Defense Department official wrote, “Any chance of politely querying [Pelosi’s team] if they really intend to do all of these or are they just picking every weekend?…[T]here’s no need to block every weekend ‘just in case’…” The email also notes that Pelosi’s office had, “a history of canceling many of their past requests.”
One DOD official complained about the “hidden costs” associated with the speaker’s last minute changes and cancellations. “We have…folks prepping the jets and crews driving in (not a short drive for some), cooking meals and preflighting the jets etc.”
The documents include a discussion of House Ethics rules and Defense Department policies as they apply to the speaker’s requests for staff, spouses and extended family to accompany her on military aircraft. In May 2008, for example, Pelosi requested that her husband join her on a Congressional Delegation (CODEL) into Iraq. The DOD explained to Pelosi that the agency has a written policy prohibiting spouses from joining CODEL’s into combat zones.
Documents obtained from the U.S. Army include correspondence from Speaker Pelosi’s office requesting an Army escort and three military planes to transport Pelosi and other members of Congress to Cleveland, Ohio, for the funeral services of the late Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones. Pelosi noted in her letter of August 22, 2008, that such a request, labeled “Operation Tribute” was an “exception to standard policy.”
According to Judicial Watch, there exists an email exchange that suggests Pelosi was making demands to use certain aircraft and would get irritated when her demands were not met, even if the plane she wanted to use simply wasn’t available at the time because it was being used elsewhere.
The group also reported that an email exchange between a Department of Defense staffer shows that Pelosi’s request for a particular military aircraft was not met because of rest requirements for the crew.
Pelosi was offered help to fly commercial, but she apparently was not OK with that because then her spouse might have to pay for his own ticket.
“During another email exchange DOD staff advised Kay King that one Pelosi military aircraft request could not be met because of “crew rest requirements” and offered to help secure commercial travel. Kay King responded: “We appreciate the efforts to help the codel [sic] fly commercially but you know the problem that creates with spouses. If we can find another way to assist with military assets, we would like to do that.”
Part of Judicial Watch’s report covers an incident from 2007 in which Pelosi apparently requested a particular Air Force plane to “ferry” her and staff members between San Francisco and DC.
The plane she requested was a 42-seater. It’s reported that the former House Speaker, Dennis Hastert only got a 12-seater.
Tom Fitton chimed in as well, stating that “Taken together, these documents show that Speaker Pelosi treats the Air Force like her personal airline,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.
“Not only does Speaker Pelosi issue unreasonable requests for military travel, but her office seems unconcerned about wasting taxpayer money with last minute cancellations and other demands,” he added.