- Joshua Roberts/Reuters
- Two Democratic lawmakers want House Oversight Chairman Trey Gowdy to hold hearings on the Trump administration’s travel practices.
- The Democrats want the hearings in light of reports on Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt’s travel habits.
A pair of top Democrats are pushing House Oversight Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy to hold hearings on two Trump administration officials’ “extravagant” travel habits.
In a letter to Gowdy sent by House Oversight Committee ranking member Elijah Cummings, a Maryland Democrat, and Democratic Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi of Illinois, the lawmakers pushed Gowdy to hold hearings on whether President Donald Trump’s administration is trying to protect tax dollars when it comes to air travel.
The lawmakers made the request in light of recent reports involving the “extravagant” flying habits of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt.
The Democrats cited documents that showed Mnuchin had spent nearly $1 million in taxpayer dollars spread out over eight flights aboard military aircraft. They also mentioned reports that Pruitt spent roughly 300,000 on a series of trips. Those stories followed late 2017 and early 2018 reports that former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, former Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin, and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke had either spent lavishly on private flights or made questionable air-travel decisions.
“The extensive use of noncommercial aircraft by multiple members of the Trump Administration is disrespectful to the American taxpayers who foot the bill for these expenses,” the lawmakers wrote in the letter, which was provided to Business Insider. “It is unacceptable that the White House and several agencies have refused to provide our committee with the documents we need to conduct our oversight responsibilities.”
In February, Gowdy pressed Pruitt for documents related to his travels, but Pruitt missed the deadline to turn those documents over earlier this month. Gowdy, a South Carolina Republican who is leaving Congress after the midterm elections, has made similar requests of other Trump officials too.
Read the letter: