With all this talk about America’s demise off the fiscal cliff, you’d think that the politicians running the show would at least pretend to live as if our financial situation was as dire as they and their media mouthpieces make it out to be. Actually, nevermind. These days, nothing surprises us anymore when it comes to political hypocrisy. “Political hypocrisy” has become redundant. So, it’s not really all that surprising to learn that the Obama’s Hawaii family vacations have netted over $20 million since he took office.
They vacation quite a bit. Michelle has to go skiing out West every year. They’ve gone to Martha’s Vineyard every summer except last year when he was campaigning. Vacationing during a political campaign looks bad. It makes it look like you don’t care all that much about being president. But vacationing during a financial crisis is nothing. Once you become president, you can do pretty much whatever you want, and the media will stay off your case about it as long as you’re a liberal.
But the $20 million figure is just from their Hawaii getaways every Christmas. Each time they visit there, it costs on average $4 million, much of which is eaten up by the costly flight there and back. It costs about $180,000 an hour for Air Force One to transport the Obamas to and fro Hawaii, an 18-hour roundtrip.
Keith Hoffler, a veteran White House reporter, wrote on his blog that this past Hawaii getaway cost around $7 million:
“But $4 million almost certainly underestimates the true tally, as it does not include many miscellaneous items like the cost of flying advance teams out to Hawaii and separate flights Michelle Obama took in 2010 and 2011, when she left ahead of her husband, who was forced to stay in Washington to finish up work with Congress. This year, Obama returned from Hawaii to complete a deal on the Fiscal Cliff and then jetted back to Honolulu, where he is now engaged in Part 2 of his vacation. The second roundtrip flight added about $3.24 million to the tab this time, bringing the cost of the 2012-1013 vacation to well over $7 million. If we assume the estimates are probably quite low, then it’s likely that the bill for the combined vacations is more than $20 million.”
The president’s salary, even combined with his $50,000 annual expense account, his $100,000 travel account and his $19,000 “entertainment” account couldn’t pay for an annual $4 million vacation, not to mention the other vacations that they take during the rest of the year. He might pay for his and his family’s rental home, but pretty much everything else is taxpayer-funded. He lives like royalty because America has turned the once humble office of presidency into a monarchy.