President Barack Obama’s four vacations to Hawaii since becoming president may cost taxpayers “in excess of $20 million, and possibly much, much more,’’ the White House Dossier reports
A breakdown by the Hawaii Reporter shows his trips in 2009, 2010, and 2011 cost about $4 million, much of it for Air Force One. But that doesn’t include costs like flying in advance teams and separate flights Michelle Obama twice took.
When Obama returned from Hawaii to work on the fiscal cliff deal last week and then jetted back to Honolulu, the second roundtrip flight added about $3.24 million to the tab, bringing the 2012-2013 vacation to over $7 million, the Reporter said.
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“If we assume the estimates are probably quite low, then it’s likely to the bill for the combined vacations is more than $20 million,’’ said the Dossier’s Keith Koffler.
“Given that much of the cost involves transporting the First Family and its retinue, the Obamas could have saved taxpayers millions by doing what the vast majority of Americans do: taking either one trip a year, or none.’’
Koffler said while some argued the president is justified in returning to Hawaii because that is where he was born and grew up, “how many of us get to go visit our roots for a two week vacation every year?
“The Obamas probably also feel they must go to Hawaii because they are creatures of habit . . . But their allegiance to routine is costing the taxpayers – including those in the middle class Obama claims to care so much about – millions of dollars.’’
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