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The PJ Tatler

Bridget Johnson


May 3, 2012 - 2:10 pm

Apparently the party with taxpayer money isn’t over, even in the glaring light of the GSA Vegas scandal that cost the head of the agency her job.

Earlier this week, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration put up a job posting on the Federal Business Opportunities website looking for magicians to perform at an upcoming leadership training conference.

The performers would be paid for presentations that included “experiential exercises, physical energizers, magic tricks, puzzles, brain teasers, word games, humor and team-building exercises, designed to demonstrate how to stimulate creativity, encourage active participation, and practice needed skills and competencies.”

Rep. Ralph Hall (R-Texas), chairman of the Committee on Science, Space and Technology, fired off a letter to NOAA administrator Jane Lubchenco today calling on her to “immediately halt spending associated with this conference.”

Hall also requested information on conference activities and spending, including amounts spent on magicians, comedians, mind-readers, and related performers for the last three years.

“As the Federal government continues to burden American taxpayers with trillion-dollar deficits and NOAA struggles to meet critical weather forecasting missions to protect lives and property, this type of ridiculous and wasteful spending is simply unacceptable,” said Hall.

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.
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