Before Obama left office he arranged with the State Department for a series of “official visits” to foreign countries spanning the next 20 years. Using discretionary funds from the Office of Presidential Visits and Vacations, Obama was able to weasel what would have been another $2.1 billion in free vacations for him and up to 24 members of his family plus staff and a dog sitter until the year 2036.
He would have, that is, had he not lost his office to Donald Trump. Trump, who is always looking for ways to save money, was having the office used for vacations repainted with 24 karat gold leaf trim and having the shelves lined with leather when he was presented with a ledger that contained all of the travel plans and expenses. The ledger was found by one of the 31 workers Trump hired from outside the typical White House staff to make alterations requiring specialized craftsmen.
Our President immediately canceled the plans and recalled all Secret Service agents scheduled to protect the Obamas anywhere outside of the United States. The Obamas, who are still waiting in Kenya for their documents so they can re-enter the country, are also facing another new challenge at the hands of Trump: They’re going to have to repay the government for all of those vacations that weren’t official state business.
The bill, after some small allowances for days that were possibly work-related, is for $214 million. Of the 692 days the Obamas spent on vacation, almost none included any work at all. They ate, slept, and golfed and Michelle was given shopping allowances from the Office of Discretionary Gifting Funds, which is supposed to be used to buy presents for visiting dignitaries.
It’s just one scandal after another with these people.