$10,673 spent at barbecue restaurants! Oink!
While Americans are struggling to put food on the table for their families, Members of Congress and their staffers are blowing tax dollars on fine dining and fast food. According to a new report from a government watchdog group, the House consumed $2.6 million worth of food and beverages in a recent nine-month period.
Democrats and Republicans are both guilty of gluttony, the Sunlight Foundation’s House Expenditure Reports Database reveals. $298,734 was spent on food and beverages by the Democratic Party’s largest offices (the Democratic Caucus, the Office of the Majority Leader and the Office of the Majority Whip) and $202,927 was spent on food and beverages by the Republican Party’s largest offices (the Republican Conference, the Office of the Minority Leader and the Office of the Minority Whip), AOL News reports.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) office managed to tear through $83,341 over the nine-month period. That amount is not included in the overall tab for the Democratic Party’s largest offices noted above.
Congressional Pages, the youngsters who lead Capitol tours and perform grunt work, enjoyed $140,027 worth of ‘free’ food, thanks to congressionally-charged-taxpayer-funded debit cards that are issued for use in cafeterias.
The report also shows Members of Congress’ fondness for a trendy new restaurant in town. $63,016 of your hard-earned money went towards wining and dining starving congressmen at Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant, The Source. And, you know it’s a budget-busting restaurant when the menu doesn’t have prices on entree selections.
Keeping the House buzzing all day long, $84,794 was spent on “coffee-centric companies.” AOL News notes that “7,743 pounds of coffee beans (at $10.95 each) could be bought with that much money” while “348,468 cups of coffee (about 45 8-ounce cups per pound) could be brewed from that many beans.”
And, congressional water coolers are, apparently, just for talking around. $604K was spent on bottled water.
What was President Obama saying about “fat cat bankers” on Wall Street and how taxpayers have a right to be fuming mad at them?
“They’re still puzzled why is it that people are mad at the banks. Well, let’s see,” President Obama said on Dec. 13, 2009. “You guys are drawing down $10, $20 million bonuses after America went through the worst economic year that it’s gone through in — in decades, and you guys caused the problem. And we’ve got 10% unemployment.”
The unemployment rate is still hovering around 10% and now we get wind that Members of Congress are pigging-out on fast food and fine dining while countless citizens are struggling to find money to feed their own families, let alone, themselves. Perhaps President Obama should take a peek down the road and crackdown on the porky politicians charged with responsibly administering tax dollars during an economic recession.