OCTOBER 14, 2010
Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, announced today that it has obtained new documents from the United States Air Force detailing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s repeated use of United States Air Force aircraft. According to the documents, obtained by Judicial Watch through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), Pelosi used Air Force aircraft on 85 flights from March 2009 through June 2010. Members of Pelosi’s family were guests on at least two flights.
Among the highlights from the documents, obtained pursuant to a FOIA request filed on January 25, 2009:
- Pelosi used the Air Force aircraft for a total of 85 trips, covering 206,264 miles, from March 2, 2009 through June 7, 2010. Pelosi, her guests and Air Force personnel logged a total of 428.6 hours on these flights.
- Members of Pelosi’s family were guests on at least two flights. On June 20, 2009, Speaker Pelosi’s daughter, son-in-law and two grandsons joined a flight from Andrews Air Force Base to San Francisco International Air Port. That flight included $143 in on-flight expenses for food and other items. On July 2, 2010, Pelosi took her grandson on a flight from Andrews Air Force Base to Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, California, which is northeast of San Francisco.
According to previous documents uncovered by Judicial Watch, the Speaker’s military travel cost the United States Air Force $2,100,744.59 over a two-year period — $101,429.14 of which was for in-flight expenses, including food and alcohol. For example, purchases for one Pelosi-led congressional delegation traveling from Washington, DC, through Tel Aviv, Israel to Baghdad, Iraq May 15-20, 2008 included: Johnny Walker Red scotch, Grey Goose vodka, E&J brandy, Bailey’s Irish Crème, Maker’s Mark whiskey, Courvoisier cognac, Bacardi Light rum, Jim Beam whiskey, Beefeater gin, Dewar’s scotch, Bombay Sapphire gin, Jack Daniels whiskey, Corona beer and several bottles of wine.
Judicial Watch also previously uncovered internal Department of Defense documents (DOD) email correspondence detailing attempts by DOD staff to accommodate Pelosi’s numerous requests for military escorts and military aircraft as well as the speaker’s last minute cancellations and changes. For example, in response to a series of requests for military aircraft, one Defense Department official wrote, “Any chance of politely querying [Pelosi’s team] if they really intend to do all of these or are they just picking every weekend?…[T]here’s no need to block every weekend ‘just in case’… “The email also notes that Pelosi’s office had, “a history of canceling many of their past requests.”
“Pelosi’s abusive use of military aircraft demonstrates a shocking lack of regard for the American taxpayer and the men and women who serve in the U.S. Air Force. Speaker Pelosi may have a frequent flyer record for taxpayer-financed luxury jet travel,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.