of Travel-- Joe Biden outranks Tom Delay in travel funded by interest groups; Holy Casa Blanca, is
there "gambling" going on here?
Democratic Senator Joe Biden outranks Republican House Majority Leader Tom Delay on the list ranking federal
lawmakers from top to bottom with respect to traveling at the expense of "non-profit"
interest groups. This is according to an April
29, 2005, CBS News report based on studies by PoliticalMoneyLine.Com.
One can rightly be a critic of such expense-paid travel by Tom Delay, but one cannot rightly limit
one's sense of outrage to the activities of Delay.
Furthermore, to focus on such activities by federal lawmakers is akin to the famous
"Gambling? Here?" scene in Casa Blanca. There may be rare
exceptions in which compelling reasons exist to make it in the public interest for a
lawmaker to travel somewhere at the expense of private interests (including those
"non-profit" interests much beloved by the Left as well as the Right), but absent
clear, detailed, and public disclosures of such compelling reasons, lawmakers ought to decline to
accept such benefits.
In the meantime, spare me the sanctimonious condemnation of such overindulgence by the most
overindulged group of humans ever to walk the planet-- i.e., federal lawmakers.
If the purpose of a trip isn't important enough to warrant expenditure of taxpayer funds, why should
a lawmaker accept expense-paid travel to exotic places funded by interest groups motivated at least
in part by desires to ingratiate themselves to such lawmaker with respect to legislation such
groups may favor (or oppose)? Being a critic of aspects of Delay's political behavior (in the
case of Terry Schiavo, for example) does not make me blind to the patently hypocritical nature of
his opponents' condemnation of his travel-expense practices (which I likewise oppose), which are
morally indistinguishable from those of many other federal lawmakers in both parties.
Wrenn, Editor at PoliSat.Com.
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29, 2005 #01 Daily Update at PoliSat.Com,
where satire is always
commentary, but commentary
isn't always satire.
Trappings of Travel.
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