Congress’ Free Travel

Remember all the noise over the Wall Street CEOs’ corporate jets? Well, it turns out Congress has its own version: the US Air Force. ABC News is lifting the veil on congressional delegations—when lawmakers travel the world on the taxpayers’ dime. Members of a bipartisan CoDel sojourned this week through Brussels, Vienna, and Paris (for Valentine’s Day), and were able to avoid long airport lines and annoying flight delays—because they were flown free by the Air Force, a journey ABC values at $200,000 per person. Asked about the trip, Rep. John Tanner, D-Tenn., said: “We need to build relationships. I would rather personally go home and see my grandchildren. It takes a lot of time and effort to go over there during every break.” Another serial offender: Rep. Gary Ackerman, D.-N.Y., who last February flew first class (cost to taxpayers: $14,000) to England for a three-day trip.