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Thread: John Boehner to fly commercial as Speaker

  1. #1

    John Boehner to fly commercial as Speaker

    "House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Wednesday he intends to take commercial flights home when he moves up to speaker in the new Congress.

    “Over the last 20 years, I have flown back and forth to my district on commercial aircraft, and I am going to continue to do that,” he told reporters.

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, took heat in 2007 when she started flying an Air Force jet that could go nonstop back to her congressional district in California."

    Source:
    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1110/44943.html
    Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories...#ixzz155ZqrF7H

  2. #2
    Sigh.....

    http://www.factcheck.org/askfactchec..._200-seat.html

    Did Nancy Pelosi order up a 200-seat jet for her personal use?

    Is it true that Nancy Pelosi travels from California three times a week on a private jet (200-seat size) at a cost to the taxpayers of $60K per flight? If so, this would total $480K per month or $5.7M per year. This comes from taxpayer money? If true, how can we criticize others? Is this a good use of taxpayers' hard-earned money and what about the carbon footprint?

    The Democratic House speaker normally flies in a 12-seat Air Force jet, just as her Republican predecessor did. This rumor stems from a request by the House sergeant at arms, not Pelosi, for a jet large enough to reach California without refueling.

    Reports like this one, saying Pelosi routinely flies about in her own 757-size jet, have been floating around for almost two years. The claims were revived when Democrats complained that CEOs of the Big Three U.S. automakers had used their corporate jets to come to Washington to seek billions in federal aid. But the rumors are incorrect. Spokespeople for Pelosi and Andrews Air Force Base say that the speaker has used the big Air Force jet once, but she normally uses a much smaller plane, the same one used by the previous speaker of the House, Republican Dennis Hastert.

    The spread of this rumor – and its first debunking – dates back to February 2007. At that time, the speaker of the House had had access to an Air Force craft for about five and a half years. Hastert had been issued a plane after Sept. 11, 2001, for security reasons (the speaker of the House is next in line after the vice president for presidential succession). Hastert used an Air Force C-20B, a small 12-seater based on the Gulfstream III, to travel to his home district in Illinois. (Ford and GM auto executives, incidentally, travel in the slightly larger Gulfstream IV.)

    When Pelosi became speaker, House Sergeant at Arms Bill Livingood, according to his own account, worried that the small craft would be unable to travel to her home district of San Francisco without stopping to refuel. Livingood, who was first elected by a Newt Gingrich-led House in 1995, asked the Air Force and the Department of Defense about getting a bigger plane. He also requested clarifications of other rules regarding the aircraft – for instance, whether family members would be allowed to accompany Pelosi on her flights.

    According to ABC News' Jake Tapper, Capt. Herb McConnell of the Air Force said that the C-20B is sometimes able to make cross-country flights without refueling, but that it depends on headwinds. The much larger C-32, a military version of a Boeing 757 that's usually used by the vice president and the first lady, is easily able to make a nonstop flight across the country. But it's also on the lavish side. It's not quite a 200-seater, but it does include 50 business-class seats and a full stateroom with a private lavatory and entertainment system.

    We've seen no evidence, however, that Livingood specifically requested for Pelosi to have access to the C-32, which is the largest plane available at the 89th Airlift wing at Andrews Air Force Base. According to his statement, he requested a plane that was able to fly cross-country. Pelosi spokespeople at the time said that the speaker would be happy to use a smaller plane that could make a nonstop cross-country flight.

    The Pentagon responded to this request by saying that it would make "every effort ... to provide non-stop shuttle support," but that Pelosi's aircraft access would depend on availability. Officials also clarified that Pelosi's family members and other members of Congress could fly with her, but they would have to reimburse the government for their flights and food, paying the price of a coach ticket on a commercial airline. Pelosi would have to submit a written request for her family or other Congress members to accompany her on flights.

    The Pentagon response stoked rumors that Pelosi had requested access to a posh personal craft for herself and anyone she wanted to bring along. Tapper traces the rumor back to House Minority Whip Roy Blunt, who called the C-32 "a flying Lincoln bedroom." That's not a wholly inaccurate assessment of the plane (there's even a pull-out bed!), but Blunt implied that Pelosi had expressly requested such extravagance. White House spokesman Tony Snow called this a "silly story," breaking with congressional Republicans who objected to Pelosi's supposedly over-the-top request. At a press briefing, Snow reiterated that the conversations about plane travel were perfectly routine:

    Snow, Feb. 7, 2007: After September 11th, the Department of Defense – with the consent of the White House – agreed that the Speaker of the House should have military transport. And so what is going on is that the Department of Defense is going through its rules and regulations and having conversations with the Speaker about it. So Speaker Hastert had access to military aircraft and Speaker Pelosi will, too.
    Pelosi spokesman Brendan Daly told FactCheck.org that the speaker does have access to military air travel. When she flies to her home district, she uses whatever Air Force craft is available. Daly told us that "they try to do a nonstop flight." But the plane Pelosi uses most often is the C-20B, and she has occasionally used even smaller planes. According to Daly, Pelosi once used the C-32 when no other planes were available, but she also has had to stop for refueling on at least one trip on a smaller aircraft. Pelosi's family has traveled with her a few times, but they had to reimburse the government for the cost of their tickets, as stipulated in the Pentagon's letter. Congress members who are traveling to California sometimes do the same. Pelosi only uses the jet to travel between Washington, D.C., and San Francisco on official business. For any other trip, she and her family use commercial airlines.

    Update, December 22: After this story was posted, we received word from Eric Sharman, deputy chief of public affairs at Andrews Air Force Base, confirming what Pelosi's spokesman told us about her aircraft use. Sharman said that Pelosi has in the past used the C-20B and the slightly larger C-37A, depending on availability, and that these may or may not be able to make a nonstop cross-country flight depending on conditions. He confirms that Pelosi has used the C-32 once and only once, when no other planes were available.

    Update, March 23: The Web site Judicial Watch has made public e-mails to and from the Department of Defense regarding Pelosi's travel requests. The conservative organization claims the e-mails show that Pelosi has made “unreasonable requests for military travel.” These e-mails, however, back up what we were told by Pelosi's staff and by the Air Force, i.e., that Pelosi did not usually travel on the C-32 and that any family members or other members of Congress she brought with her on flights to her home district were asked to reimburse the cost of a coach ticket. The messages are about smaller planes, not the 757-size jet. Also, most of the e-mails are not about shuttles to and from Pelosi's home district at all, but are about congressional delegations to other states and countries. Pelosi's office oversees transportation for these trips for all members of the House, not just the speaker. For a little more detail on the Judicial Watch-released e-mails, see our post on the FactCheck Wire, "Plane False."
    Also, we originally said the C-32 seats 50. But an Air Force fact sheet, while showing that it has 50 seats, says that it seats 45. We are resolving this contradiction in favor of the lower number.
    1bad65, you make me laugh. Dare I say it? You seem to be suffering from ODS (Obama Derangement Syndrome).

    "I didn't vote for him but he's my president, and I hope he does a good job." - John Wayne

    Clearly you want President Obama to fail, or else you wouldn't bring up every little thing you can to try and discredit him and his Administration. You seems to be actively hoping for failure.

    Perhaps you can take a lesson from The Duke.

  3. #3
    Sigh....

    http://www.snopes.com/politics/pelosi/jet.asp

    After the 9/11 terrorists attacks in 2001, President George W. Bush ordered that the Speaker of the House (next in line of succession to the presidency after the vice-president) be afforded secure government transportation on military aircraft when traveling on official business, and then-speaker Dennis Hastert often used a C-20B to travel back and forth between Washington to his home state of Illinois.
    1bad65, you make me laugh. Dare I say it? You seem to be suffering from ODS (Obama Derangement Syndrome).

    "I didn't vote for him but he's my president, and I hope he does a good job." - John Wayne

    Clearly you want President Obama to fail, or else you wouldn't bring up every little thing you can to try and discredit him and his Administration. You seems to be actively hoping for failure.

    Perhaps you can take a lesson from The Duke.

  4. #4
    LMAO at you.

    You just don't get the point. The point is that Boehner is saving the Gov't money. Although he has the OPTION of flying as Pelosi and Hastert did, he CHOSE to fly commercial.

  5. #5
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    Or are they laughing at YOU...

    Boehner''s statement is a PR ploy - plain and simple... or it is showing how simplistic and irresponsible he can be.

    The Speaker of the House of Representatives is THIRD in line - as in President, VP, Speaker...

    So, if we are truly at risk from terror and enemy attacks, the danger of having someone so close to being the POTUS traveling in any unsecure fashion is ridiculous.

    This means that either Boehner is planning on saying later "See, I was all for saving the taxpayers' money, but the rules of the government wouldn't let me." - all to get stupid people to say "oooh...he is out to be the govt. watchdog....ooohh..." (as in some will believe anything). Or, he is a doofus who takes his responsibilities as Speaker lightly.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by GLW View Post
    This means that either Boehner is planning on saying later "See, I was all for saving the taxpayers' money, but the rules of the government wouldn't let me." - all to get stupid people to say "oooh...he is out to be the govt. watchdog....ooohh..." (as in some will believe anything). Or, he is a doofus who takes his responsibilities as Speaker lightly.
    From the article you didn't bother to read before you commented on it:

    "House Deputy Sergeant of Arms Kerri Hanley said officials there had approved the decision of Boehner, the presumed new speaker in the new Congress, to fly commercially, both to his district and to other locations in the country.

    “Based on the current security assessment, the sergeant of arms is comfortable with him traveling commercially,” Hanley said."

  7. #7
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    key word is CURRENT...he is NOT Speaker of the House YET....and is therefore NOT in the succession order for becoming POTUS.

    Until the new Congress is seated and the majority party has its official election of their Speaker of the House (pretty much a shoo in but it does have to take place),
    he is nothing more than a Rep. who holds a minority party position.

    Were something to happen to him between now and his taking the Speaker's role, the Republicans would simply elect another Speaker.

    However, once the Speaker is chosen and it is official, his security level is no what it is CURRENTLY.

    So, CURRENTLY, there is no reason for him to even be talking about how he would travel because he is NOT eligible for the same travel arrangements that a Speaker of the House has.

    AFTER he becomes Speaker, his security situation is NOT what it is CURRENTLY and it is only then that he should even be talking about how he plans to travel....and it is THEN that he should not be on commercial transport.

    So, he is either jumping the gun and talking NOW - a dumb non-story at best - or he is talking about AFTER he is Speaker - and which is what your post is implying - in which case, he is going to either change his tune or prove himself to be irresponsible.

    Take your pick.

  8. #8
    You just can't give anyone with an (R) after their name any credit, can you?

    The man is just doing what he's always done before. He isn't letting power go to his head. I actually like having a Speaker (or any representative) who isn't an elitist and will fly like 99% of regular, working Americans do. And yes, one benefit the country gets because of Congressman Boehner's decision is savings. It's a breath of fresh air to see a Gov't official actually saving taxpayer money rather than spending it like a drunken sailor.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by BJJ-Blue View Post
    You just can't give anyone with an (R) after their name any credit, can you?

    The man is just doing what he's always done before. He isn't letting power go to his head. I actually like having a Speaker (or any representative) who isn't an elitist and will fly like 99% of regular, working Americans do. And yes, one benefit the country gets because of Congressman Boehner's decision is savings. It's a breath of fresh air to see a Gov't official actually saving taxpayer money rather than spending it like a drunken sailor.
    The fact that he is a government member makes him one of your countries elite.

    What are you trying to sell here? This is the guy who gave out tobacco company cheques on the house floor prior to a vote on them and has been strongly tied to lobbyists as late as only a month or so ago.

    you don't think he's elitist? that's amazing... I can't think of any single member of the government who isn't elitist or a member of the power elite.

    Senates, congresses, presidents chairs etc are all filled with multimillionaires more often than not. I'm not certain that government of any stripe is in the business of actually serving the people so much as they are in the business of regulation and control of the people.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by BJJ-Blue View Post
    You just can't give anyone with an (R) after their name any credit, can you?

    The man is just doing what he's always done before. He isn't letting power go to his head. I actually like having a Speaker (or any representative) who isn't an elitist and will fly like 99% of regular, working Americans do. And yes, one benefit the country gets because of Congressman Boehner's decision is savings. It's a breath of fresh air to see a Gov't official actually saving taxpayer money rather than spending it like a drunken sailor.
    He took $340,000 from the tobacco industry and is cozy with Goldman Sachs and Citigroup. You don't call that elite?

    This guy is dirty, and a PR stunt does not exempt him from that.
    The weakest of all weak things is a virtue that has not been tested in the fire.
    ~ Mark Twain

    Everyone has a plan until they’ve been hit.
    ~ Joe Lewis

    A warrior may choose pacifism; others are condemned to it.
    ~ Author unknown

    "You don't feel lonely.Because you have a lively monkey"

    "Ninja can HURT the Spartan, but the Spartan can KILL the Ninja"

  11. #11
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    Assuming facts not in evidence again.

    My statement is that Boehner is simply a ranking member of the House CURRENTLY.

    Nothing partisan about that at all.

    Since he is not in the succession flow for the presidency, there is no reason CURRENTLY for him to fly at the nation's expense.

    Nothing partisan about that. Were current Democratic Caucus Chairman John B. Larson (CT) to say that he was NOT going to fly on the nation's dime, it would not be news since like Boehner CURRENTLY, there are no grounds for him to be afforded that privilege.

    Come January, Boehner is the presumptive Speaker of the House of Representatives. This makes him THIRD in succession - or actually SECOND since it is SUCCESSION.

    Currently, this list is :

    1 Vice President Joe Biden
    2 Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi
    3 President pro tempore of the Senate Daniel Inouye
    4 Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton

    Come January, the name Nancy Pelosi will by all estimates change to John Boehner. The other 3 entries will stay the same.

    All FOUR of these people should be afforded secure transportation at all times given how close they are to becoming POTUS...

    and

    There is NOTHING partisan about THAT either.

    And for Boehner to not recognize the possibility of his boogie man of terrorist attack by accepting and saying nothing about the use of secure transport shows that "Country First" either has no meaning to him or he is dumber than a sack of hammers....take your pick.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by David Jamieson View Post
    The fact that he is a government member makes him one of your countries elite.
    Stereotype much?

    No, it doesn't. Sure, many are elitists. But to say ALL is just wrong. I thought you liberals were all about judging people as individuals, not prejudging people.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Drake View Post
    This guy is dirty, and a PR stunt does not exempt him from that.
    It's not a PR stunt. He's been flying commercial since he's been in Congress.

    Quote Originally Posted by GLW View Post
    And for Boehner to not recognize the possibility of his boogie man of terrorist attack by accepting and saying nothing about the use of secure transport shows that "Country First" either has no meaning to him or he is dumber than a sack of hammers....take your pick.
    What part of the House Sergeant-at-Arms is comfortable with Congressman Boehner flying commercial are you not getting?

  14. #14
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    Well, that is based on the CURRENT situation - again, you fail to see that ANYTHING can be said now and changed in 3 months.

    So, if it is secure then, tell me how you can warrant such fear of terror and justify things.

    But, again, you are falling for a PR stunt which begs the question of exactly how gullible you truly are.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by BJJ-Blue View Post
    It's not a PR stunt. He's been flying commercial since he's been in Congress.



    What part of the House Sergeant-at-Arms is comfortable with Congressman Boehner flying commercial are you not getting?
    It IS a PR stunt if he's using it as bragging rights.
    The weakest of all weak things is a virtue that has not been tested in the fire.
    ~ Mark Twain

    Everyone has a plan until they’ve been hit.
    ~ Joe Lewis

    A warrior may choose pacifism; others are condemned to it.
    ~ Author unknown

    "You don't feel lonely.Because you have a lively monkey"

    "Ninja can HURT the Spartan, but the Spartan can KILL the Ninja"

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