JANUARY 30, 2014
Judicial Watch Sues Secret Service, Defense Department for Records Detailing Use of Government Funds for President’s, First Lady’s Lavish Trips throughout 2013
Costly Michelle Obama outings to Ireland and England; vacations to Hawaii and Martha’s Vineyard; among trips being questioned in FOIA lawsuit
(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and fights government corruption, announced today that on January 13, 2014, it filed Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuits against the U.S. Secret Service and the U.S. Department of Defense to obtain records detailing the amount of government funds spent on seven separate lavish trips taken by Barack Obama and the Obama family throughout 2013 (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Secret Service (No. 1:14-cv-00046)), (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Defense(No. 1:14 – cv- 00047)).
The Secret Service FOIA lawsuit, pursuant to a series of FOIA requests from June to August 2013, seeks information from the Secret Service about “the use of U.S. Government funds to provide security and other services” to:
- “First Lady Michelle Obama, Malia Obama, Sasha Obama, and any companions on a June 2013 trip to Ireland.”
- “President Barack Obama and any companions on a June – July 2013 trip to Africa.”
- “First Lady Michelle Obama and any companions on a Summer 2012 trip to London, England for the Olympics.”
- “President Barack Obama and any companions on a December 2012 trip to Honolulu, Hawaii.”
- “President Barack Obama and any companions on an August 2013 trip to California.”
- “President Barack Obama and any companions on an August 2013 trip to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts.”
The Secret Service failed to substantively respond to these FOIA requests, and has effectively shut down Judicial Watch’s inquiries about First Family travel.
On January 13, Judicial Watch filed a separate FOIA lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Defense seeking further “records concerning First Lady Michelle Obama’s June 2013 trip to Ireland.”
The current FOIA lawsuits are part of a continuing effort by Judicial Watch to obtain information about taxpayer funding of lavish vacations for the president and his family.
“The Obama administration is in cover-up mode on the costs of the Obamas’ travel. The Secret Service has, in contemptuous violation of law, simply stopped answering our Freedom of Information inquiries,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “It seems that our ‘king’ does not want taxpayers to know how much he’s spending on his unnecessary travel.”