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Would you be mad if your Gov. was doing this while spreading the "we're broke message?

On Feb. 11, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, his wife and three aides flew in a luxury jet to Washington for a weekend of politicking, including an appearance on Fox News Sunday and a speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference. "Our problem is not that we tax too little," Barbour told the gathering. "It's that we spend too much."

The potential presidential contender may have another problem: Mississippi taxpayers paid the tab for Barbour's first-class travel. State documents obtained by TIME show that Mississippi shelled out $7,020 to shuttle Barbour and his entourage to and from D.C. on its Cessna Citation, a cost that Barbour says is justified by state work he did in D.C. over the same weekend. "The trip requests make clear the Governor was on official business including meetings with members of Congress about issues ranging from economic development to energy policy and health care reform - all important to the people of Mississippi," says his spokeswoman Laura Hipp. According to the documents, Barbour's reason for using the state plane was a "meeting with Congressional leaders"; his office declined to make public his full schedule for the two day visit. (See "Twelve for '12: A Dozen Republicans Who Could Be the Next President.")

Taking the state's jet for a mix of personal and state business is nothing new for Barbour, who says he will make a final decision on a presidential bid in April. He racked up more than $300,000 in taxpayer-funded travel bills in 2010, spending all or part of at least 175 days outside the state, according to the Clarion-Ledger newspaper in Jackson, Miss. On trips with less overlap with state business, Barbour has made a habit of hiring his own private plane, his aides say. (Politico's Ben Smith has more detail on Barbour's flying schedule here.)

State law places few restrictions on a governor's use of the plane. But such luxuries clash with the cost-cutting message Barbour is bringing to Republicans around the country. "It's very ironic," says Lynn Evans of Mississippi's Common Cause, a nonpartisan watchdog group. "For him, that's just the way it's supposed to work."

Answer Question

Asked by sweet-a-kins at 11:07 AM on Mar. 24, 2011 in Politics & Current Events

Level 34 (67,502 Credits)
Answers (68)
  • The rules do not apply to politicians. They are part of the entitled group.


    Answer by Sisteract at 11:12 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • jewjewbee

    Answer by jewjewbee at 11:12 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • jewjewbee

    Answer by jewjewbee at 11:13 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • Damn, you should see what Nikki Haley in SC is spending and giving raises to her staff who oddly enough were some of her biggest donation givers and she says we are broke, but new positions all got BIG raises. Now our Lt Gov has been charged with over 100 campaign fraud spending violations. . Political power positions should ALL be pay free. No $$ for doing your civic duty to the people. That would really stop the greedy power hungry from running. How about we all have monthly votes for EVERYTHING and do away with law makers and let the majority vote decide EVERYTHING?? Voter turn out would be in the upper 90%'s then I bet.

    Answer by vbruno at 11:13 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • LMAO JJB- are you attempting to compare the Gov of a rather small state to the leader of the free world?

    What work did his wife do on the trip?

    Answer by Sisteract at 11:15 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • yes. Its wrong. JUST like the WASTE obama and his family are spending AND pelosi with her new luxery officewwhile HER state is COMPLETELY broke. Its wrong all the way around and all of them need to cut it the hell out.

    Answer by momof030404 at 11:17 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • jewjewbee

    Answer by jewjewbee at 11:17 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • IThe Obama's definately have spent a lot on their appearance. I remember Michelle getting make ovedr after make over in magazine articles and photos.
    No I don't have a link, but it is something I noticed everytime I stood in line at a grocery store.

    Answer by idaspida at 11:19 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • what does Michelle spend, before she gets out of bed every morning?


    Answer by jewjewbee at 11:21 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

  • Absolutely I would.I already have been upset with the spending all around and just because dems don't tote 'stop the spending'..doesn't give them an excuse/free pass..that's lame.Any so called conservative politician spending friviously should be ashamed of themselves..They are not listening to their constituents.

    Answer by tnmomofive at 11:23 AM on Mar. 24, 2011

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