U.S. Budget Director Uses Ryan Zinke Flights as Example of ‘Appropriate’ Charter Flight Use
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U.S. Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney spoke out this week about the use of chartered planes by department heads at public expense. The response comes after Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price resigned from his position. Others, including Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, are being questioned about charter flights they took. Mulvaney told Fox News’ Chris Wallace, that the president’s position on the issue is explicitly clear.
“This is the policy: ‘Just because it is legal, doesn’t mean it’s right,'” Mulvaney said. ”
My guess is and there are ongoing investigations in a couple of different agencies right now, we will find out that all of this travel was entirely legal, now the question is whether or not it’s ‘right’ and I think that is the lens the president wants to view this travel through, not just whether or not it follows the law.”
Mulvaney used Zinke’s trips as an example of why sometimes chartered flights are needed.
“Let’s be clear, there are absolutely times where this type of travel is appropriate, I think if you look at some of the places specifically that Secretary Zinke went, there is no commercial service there, in fact there was no commercial service anywhere near where he was going and I think that’s the case on many of those occasions, the question is are we doing the best that we can to be good stewards of taxpayer dollars?”
The bipartisan House Oversite Committee will be investigating the matter soon, they’ve requested a detailed account of each flight by Executive branch administrators. That report is due next Tuesday, October 10.