Thursday, June 04, 2009

Date night.

What does it cost the President to take his wife to supper? Out-of-town? Not a dime, apparently, but it sure costs the taxpayer a lot. According to the Washington Times, and Flopping Aces:
* Marine One and two look alike decoys from the White House to Andrews Air Force Base. Dozens, possibly a hundred staff for planning, radar, mechanical etc.
* Three Gulfstream Executive jets for the trip from Andrews to JFK Airport in New York. One Gulfstream for the Obama’s and two more for staff and the press. Dozens of Air Force staff for mechanical, planning, piloting etc.
* A fleet of limos and vans and more helicopters all airlifted to New York on military cargo planes. Dozens more staff involved in the operation and planning.
* Secret Service on the ground in New York for days, possibly a week to review every location and prepare a movement plan. Dozens on duty Saturday night including sharp shooters, and undercover agents.
* Military communications staff to set up and man a command post.
* Overtime for hundreds of policemen along the route and at each location the Obama’s visited.
I understand that the President needs a night out, occasionally. That he, like everyone else should take a break.

However, he's the one who famously scolded corporate executives: “You can’t get corporate jets. You can’t go take a trip to Las Vegas, or go down to the Super Bowl on the taxpayers’ dime.” Our president is a hypocrite. Plain and simple.


Rivrdog said...

...and the White House reply to a demand to account for the cost of all that? The figure $24,000 was pulled out of someones butt and tossed out to the MSM, who passed it along to us.

BULLTWADDLE! The police overtime alone would have amounted to four or five times that. It used to get bad enough in Portland with these visits that the Portland Police would put their entire roster on duty (2/3 of them on O/T), and the Sheriff would then have to put HIS entire roster on duty to cover the City patrol districts that were uncovered by pulling the normal patrols (over 4 entire precincts) for the Presidential Event duty.

I seem to recall the City Council debating sending the President a bill for over $300,000 for one of these visits, and that was fifteen years ago when wages were much lower.

Portland is NOWHERE near the size of New Yawk City, so I suspect the overtime bill in NYC would be bigger. Remember that these figures only represent what the CITY would have spent, not what the entire security apparatus as you have said would have spent.

I'll bet that $24,000 figure was just for the jet fuel for SOME of the aircraft involved.

Peripatetic Engineer said...

You didn't mention closing the roads while he was en route to and from his destination.

J said...

So all presidents should just stay at the White House and never go anywhere? By the way, it sure cost a lot to ferry GWB and company back and forth to Texas.

Pawpaw said...

Nope, J. I didn't say that. I'm smart enough to know that the President has to get around and he's got a big retinue that travels with him.

Obama's the one that made an issue out of flying on corporate executive jets on the taxpayer dime. He chided other people for doing it, now he's flown to New York for the weekend on a corporate executive jet.

He was very plain about that during the campaign. But now, evidently it's okay for him to do it, but other folks should take some other transportation.

He's a hypocrite, plain and simple.

J said...

There's a big difference, Pawpaw. The President of the USA can't cross the street without a huge entourage. The President of GM could drive alone across country and nobody would know him from Adam's off ox.

Rivrdog said...

J, you have missed the whole point of this. No one here has dissed the President for having his mostly-necessary entourage.

What this critique of Obama is all about is that he fired up that huge entourage to take his wife to New York for an evening out on the town.

Most citizens of either political persuasion see that as somewhat over the top.

You also missed MY major point, which was that the actual cost of this soiree was improperly calculated, to say the least. It may well have been totally fabricated out of whole cloth.

How does THAT sit with you, sir?

President Obama seem to be a man totally out of touch with the value of a dollar, and that bodes very ill for our nation, J.

J said...

I missed neither of your points, Riverdog. What you really mean is that THIS president shouldn't leave the White House for anything but national business.