Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House, is on a congressional delegation (CODEL) to Belgium, Egypt and Afghanistan. It has received extra attention since President Donald Trump banned her from using military aircraft, but the trip would not have been the first time she used Air Force money to travel the world.
Pelosi’s made a trip to Italy and Ukraine from July 30 to Aug. 6, 2015 that cost the Air Force $184,587.81, according to documents released Saturday under a 2015 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit by Judicial Watch. That delegation was made up of nine other members of Congress, including Democratic Reps. Anna Eshoo of California and Marcia Fudge of Ohio.
Pelosi took four family members, including her husband Paul Pelosi, were on the trip. The delegation ate at restaurants that included the James Beard American Restaurant in Milan, where a five-course meal cost up to $190. The lawmakers also toured the Vatican and met up with Italian dignitaries, including President Sergio Mattarella and then-Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, according to their itinerary.
Pelosi’s team was known to have very specific requests for the Air Force officials working with them to coordinate the trip.
“You’re going lo love this …. CODEL Pelosi is requesting the crew they had on this earlier attached trip. Apparently they were very pleased with their service. I already told the escort chances were slim,” an unidentified Air Force official wrote in an email July 9, 2015.
Pelosi’s former European trip cost the Air Force about the same amount of money it would take to send a student to Harvard University for four years.
Judicial Watch has criticized Pelosi for “abuse” of travel perks since 2009. They uncovered that Pelosi’s military travel cost the United States Air Force $2,100,744.59 over one two-year period — $101,429.14 of which was for in-flight expenses, including food and alcohol.
Pelosi blamed Trump after she canceled her congressional delegation (CODEL) to Afghanistan, arguing that Trump’s public suggestion that she fly commercial had made the trip too high-profile and dangerous.
“Due to the shutdown, I am sorry to inform you that your trip to Brussels, Egypt, and Afghanistan has been postponed. We will reschedule this seven-day excursion when the shutdown is over,” Trump wrote. “In light of the 800,000 great American workers not receiving pay, I am sure you would agree that postponing this public relations event is totally appropriate.”
Trump’s letter came a day after Pelosi sent him a letter Wednesday seeking to postpone his State of the Union address until after the shutdown ends.
Credit: Daily Caller