President George W. Bush spent over 124 million taxpayer dollars on trips to his ranch in Crawford, TX, and using John Boehner’s logic we demand that the GOP pay us back.
While trying to distract America from the fact that his own caucus passed a budget that would double the interest rate on student loans, Speaker of the House John Boehner is whipping up the faux outrage over the cost of President Obama’s travel this week. Today, Boehner said, “This week, the President traveled across the country on taxpayers’ dime, at a cost of $179,000 an hour, insisting that Congress fix a problem that we were already working on. Frankly, I think this is beneath the dignity of the White House.”
Not surprisingly, John Boehner was totally silent when President George W. Bush was setting the presidential record for most vacation days. Bush was not only on vacation more than any other president. He spent more money on non-official travel than any other president in American history. As president, George W. Bush used Air Force One to fly to his ranch in Crawford, TX for vacation.
Boehner’s comments about the cost of Obama’s travel got us thinking about how much money the Republican Party owes taxpayers for George W. Bush’s non-official vacation travels. Using a method that we have cleverly coined Boehner Math, this is what we came up with.
Number of George W. Bush flights for vacation in Crawford, TX: 77
Cost of running Air Force One: $179,000/hour
Flight time one way from the White House to Crawford: 4.5 hours
Cost of one way flight: $805,500
Roundtrip cost: $1,611,000
Total cost to taxpayers of Bush’s vacation trips to the ranch: $124,047,000
Unlike President Bush who used Air Force One as personal vacation and campaign jet, President Obama’s events were held to discuss the public policy issue of the impending increase in the student loan interest rate. Bush spent over $124 million of our tax dollars flying to Crawford to clear brush, and while he was doing this Republicans like John Boehner never demanded that he pay back the cost of his travel to the taxpayers.
Boehner and the Republican Party just don’t get it. This is a non-issue, and if they really want people to look into the cost of presidential travel, they aren’t going to like the results. They are not going to be able to paint Obama as a presidential globetrotter whose largesse is coming on the taxpayer dime.
Instead of creating a distraction issue, Boehner and the Republican Party attack on President Obama has alerted the American people to the fact that they owe us a whole lot of money. And we would like to be paid.
George W. Bush and the Republican Party owe taxpayers over $124 million, so until Boehner and Bush pay us back, the Speaker needs to keep his hypocrisy infected mouth closed.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association