By Carole on Nov 10, 2010
Soon-to-be Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio) announced today that he will continue to fly commercial airlines when he travels between Washington DC and his Ohio home. Considering current Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) has been running up a huge tab of over $28,000 for each one-way flight in a military jet between the capital and her home state, Mr. Boehner's decision reflects a significant cost savings for the American taxpayer.
To be fair, the military jet service has been a perk used by speakers of both parties. Former Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-Illinois) traveled this way after the 9/11 attacks for security purposes and the 'Speaker Shuttle' as it is unofficially known was born. But complaints as to whether Speaker Pelosi was taking advantage of the service by requesting larger planes than were needed and extending the taxpayer funded service to her extended family members have arisen over her tenure as Speaker.
That won't be an issue with Speaker Boehner who, despite the larger security detail his new position warrants, is already showing the American people that the newly elected House majority will cut unnecessary government spending when possible. "I have talked to our security folks about the security that's involved in my new role," Mr. Boehner told reporters this morning. "But over the last 20 years I have flown back and forth to my district on a commercial aircraft and I am going to continue to do that." (source)
Considering the obscene level of government spending Pelosi and her cohorts have engaged in over the past few years, this cost saving is just a drop in the bucket. But it's a start that represents a change in attitude and an acknowledgement that our elected officials need to be more responsible with the people's money.
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