Judicial Watch • Malia Obama’s Trip to Mexico: $115,500.87

Malia Obama’s Trip to Mexico: $115,500.87

Malia Obama’s Trip to Mexico: $115,500.87

DECEMBER 06, 2012

Cost to Taxpayers: $115,500.87

 (Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch today released records detailing the government funds expended on First Daughter Malia Obama’s March 2012 Spring Break vacation to Mexico. According to the records, obtained from the U.S. Secret Service as a result of a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed on September 20, 2012, the total cost of the trip amounted to $115,500.87 (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Secret Service (No. 12-cv-01562)).

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The following is a breakdown of the costs as detailed in the documents:

Ground transportation: $23,964.81

Lodging: $21,682.92

Airfare: $47,767.34

“Vouchers”: $21,636.14 (not itemized)

Support Charges: $449.66 (travel for one from Mexico City to Oaxaca, not itemized)

Malia Obama’s spring break trip evoked controversy after the Obama White House reportedly ordered the removal of press reports detailing the trip. On March 19,2012, numerous online press outlets reported that the president’s 13-year-old daughter, Malia Obama, was on a Spring Break trip to Mexico accompanied by 25 U.S. Secret Service Agents and as many as 12 of her friends. However, shortly after the press reports surfaced they were quickly removed from the Internet. The trip took place shortly after the Texas Department of Public Safety issued a statement advising students on Spring Break “to avoid Mexico.”

As reported by Politico:

The AFP, the Huffington Post and other websites have scrubbed a report about first daughter Malia Obama’s school trip. On Monday, the AFP reported that Obama’s daughter was on a school trip along with a number of friends and 25 Secret Service agents. The story was picked up by Yahoo, the Huffington Post, and the International Business Times, as well as UK publications like the Daily Mail and the Telegraph and other overseas publications like The Australian. But on Monday night, the story had been removed from those sites.

In an update to this story, Politico published a statement issued by Kristina Schake, Communications Director to the First Lady, indicating that the removal of these news stories was “a White House effort:”

“From the beginning of the administration, the White House has asked news outlets not to report on or photograph the Obama children when they are not with their parents and there is no vital news interest. We have reminded outlets of this request in order to protect the privacy and security of these girls,” stated Ms. Schake.

“In these economic times, with huge public debt and high unemployment, spending $115,000 in taxpayer funds on a Spring Break trip to Mexico is inappropriate.  Is this what Americans are being asked to pay higher taxes for?” stated Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.

Judicial Watch has been active in documenting the cost to taxpayers for the Obamas’ personal trips. For example, Judicial previously obtained records from the United States Air Force and the United States Secret Service detailing Michelle Obama’s February 2012 President’s Day weekend ski vacation to Aspen, Colorado, with her two daughters. The records indicate U.S. Secret Service costs, including accommodations at the Fasching Haus deluxe condominium and the Inn at Aspen, were $48,950.38.

Judicial Watch also obtained documents from the United States Air Force and the United States Secret Service detailing costs associated with Michelle Obama’s controversial August 2010 vacation to Spain. According to a Judicial Watch analysis, the records indicate a total combined cost of at least $467,585.

Judicial Watch also obtained documents detailing costs a June 21-27, 2011, trip taken by Michelle Obama, her family and her staff to South Africa and Botswana. Judicial Watch received mission expense records and passenger manifests for the Africa trip that described costs of $424,142 for the flight and crew alone. Other expenses, such as off-flight food, transportation, security, etc. were not included.

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Comments Welcome

  • todd.sullivan

    melindam1 is obviously quite angry.
    it’s about the taxpayer funds. for the cost of that trip, you could pay the average government employee’s salary for two years. does that sound like a wise use of money at a time when the budget is described as a crisis?
    And before you come back with privacy of the children and so forth, or ask why the children should be deprived of these opportunities just because their father is in the presidency, remember this: Mr. Obama knew what he was getting into, and what consequences would come about for his kids, in terms of their privacy, security, and so forth. His income, pension, and benefits were solidified once he was elected to the Senate. The move to run for the presidency was not essential to his well being, securing property or any other compelling need. It was a liberty interest and a voluntary move, but one that comes with responsibility. He had knowledge beforehand of the various compromises that would be in effect. He has a responsibility as the President to set an example, to be fiscally responsible, and show good stewardship of our resources such as taxpayer funds. Secret Service employees are on salary and fuel costs less than $4 per gallon. There are numerous charitable causes around the WH or in close proximity to the children’s school that would be just as noble to be involved with. The cost would only be for fuel, in the vehicles driven by the secret service, and for a location close by it would be about two gallons per vehicle, probably four vehicles, so that’s under $35. If you’d like to present a well reasoned argument why a charitable trip to Mexico is more important than a trip within the U.S., particularly for someone that does not carry the mantle of the Presidency as the POTUS or first lady would, and why an extra $115,000 would be needed, then I’m open to listen.
    But the issue is the use of taxpayer funds, not the privacy or security of the children. No one wants to see ill fall upon the kids. It’s the funding that’s at issue.

  • JerryBall

    ULGYRON: Send in a self-addressed 46-cent stamped envelope to the IRS for your refund from this Malia’s trip and your $0.0008333333 cent refund will be mailed to you.

  • webfedup

    Melinda really????
    You’re ok with spending that kind of cash for 1 child to go on a field trip when schools accross the nation are closing due to government cutbacks and our seniors cant get the necessary care to stay alive and fed???????? shut the F up you dum ass

  • jdickey107

    AnnDe said “let them be normal people”. Really? Normal people send their kids to Mexico for field trips? I guess normal people play golf with Tiger Woods too.

  • jdickey107

    Wow melindam1! Are you typing with your forehead? I like how the liberals who defend Obama can barely string a sentence together. Did you ever take a school field trip to Mexico when you were 13? The Obama’s are worth about 14 million dollars. If they want their daughter to go on a field trip, they should pay the costs associated with her travel and protection, and if they can’t afford it, just do like other Americans and don’t send her. The funny thing is the answer you people use to anything Obama does wrong is “What about Bush?” A lot of the Bush vacation days were days he spent working on his ranch in Crawford, Texas. He still put in a full days work for the America people. Since you like facts, Obama played more golf in his first year than Bush did in 8 years. it’s funny how liberals hate the rich except for their rich. The Obama’s show so much arrogance in the way they rub our noises in the dirt with their displays of wealth and position and you people eat it up like they are your king and queen.

  • tkywap

    Bet you all fifty dollars the person below me is black.

  • AnnDe

    It was a school trip AND spring break vacation. Students volunteered at an orphanage, visited archaeological sites as well as enjoying milkshakes on the town plaza.
    LOOK IT UP AT http://www.snopes.com/politics/obama/maliamexico.asp
    The story disappeared from news sites for SECURITY REASONS.
    Can you imagine how many deranged people might like to knock off Pres. Obama’s daughter?
    They know our realities also – but give ‘em a break and let them be normal people.
    It is not the Obama’s fault that there are enough haters and gun owners around to take precautions. YOU WOULD TOO. And it ain’t as comfy in their shoes as ordinary folks might think!

  • swamptoad

    Some of my co-workers have been reduced to a 4 day work week. 20% pay cut. The military has cut it’s air shows, eliminated tuition, cut many training exercises, ect, ect, ect. And we have to pay for this? I don’t care what you say about “we have to spend for the Secret Service” and “Bush did Blah Blah Blah”. SHE DID NOT HAVE TO GO! If they had any concern about the working Americans affected by sequestration, she would not have went. I will pin this story to the wall at work so the people who are having there pay cut can appreciate their sacrifice.

  • melindam1

    You people have GOT to be kidding me!!! FIRST of all. ..do ANY of you know what the onoign agreement is between the oress and the White HOuse no matter WHO is President? FO course you dont bcse you all have your noses up FAUX NEWS instead of details on facts. There is an agreement between the mainstream media like Politico and the APM and the like that any information may not be disclosed in detail on the whereabouts of the White House Children withoutthe presence of their parents FOR SECURITY REASONS you morons not bcse of some BIG “cover up”. Now remove your tin foil gats for amoment and listen up! Malia was on a ASCHOOL TRIP ..you know like a field trip ever heard of those with some school mates, this wasnt some la la la Spring break adventure. They were doing volunteer work. Any of you dfo that on your “vacations” as upstanding citizens, yeah didnt think so. Anyway back to the TRUTH… there was an earthquake that hit the area. So a spokesperson for the White House confirmed the safety of Malia and her school group to the press. And boy that just lit a wildfire of speculation among the spinners! What was she doing there? And some right wing nut job got the zany idea that it was some lavish spring break sucking up the American taxpayers dollars right? WRONG!. Let me ask any number of you yahoos…any of you know how many vaca days Bush Jr took while he was President? Any of you know how much money is spent of the tax payers dollars in exopedntiures for secret service security? ESPECIALLY for White House children..AND RIGHTFULLY SO.!! Thats a BIG job withallot of responsibility and it comes with a price of receiving DAILY death threates, so I guaranGodDamn tee you that YOU would want your children under secret servcie care when going on a FIELD TRIP with their school and I Guarantee you that YOU wouldnt wnat their whereabouts splashed across news media outlets either .. SO THATS WHAT YOUR SEEING HERE, THE $$ IS THE $$ THAT WAS SPENT STRICTLY FOR SECRET SERVICE PROTECTION AND THIS WAS A SCHOOL FIELD TRIP GET OVER IT!!! AND MOVE ON TEABILLIES

  • sickandtired

    The common folks are struggling just to keep our kids in school and bo sends one of his off to Mexico for spring break.This makes me sick to my stomach.Spending this much money is a crime,take her to Wal-Mart and buy her a cheap toy like the rest of us have to do….You are not king oboma,you are a servant of the people.


    this should not have paid for by me and any other tax payer i want to be remeburst for this

  • akdart

    The most revolting part of this story is not the money. It’s not that Mr. Obama sent his 13-year-old to Mexico. (Would you do that, especially after an advisory was issued to ‘avoid Mexico’?) No, the most serious aspect of the story is that the White House ordered the American press to remove the story from the internet — and they complied! When the President controls the news media, we are all in danger.

  • mrolfes

    why should we pay for her spring break??I cant even help my grandaughter go on a trip with her ffa wich is school related…give me back the money each person put in so i can send my grandaughter on a school related trip that is more educational then spring break…

  • Capt_Z1

    Looks like Barack and Michelle is moving the entire family to the Upity class.

  • tim55

    OK, so what can be done about this?

  • kylefclark

    But the wayward majority of Americans reelected the POS, regardless of this continued rape by BO and his family!