March 24, 2009

YOU THINK? Congress ‘Hypocrisy’ on Trips Angers Hotel Executives.

The U.S. Senate last month passed a measure limiting “luxury” spending for corporate travel by recipients of federal bailout funds. Two weeks later, about two dozen senators of both parties left town for political meetings on the Florida coast. . . .

Christopher Dodd, a Connecticut Democrat who heads the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, sponsored the amendment to the $787 billion stimulus package that requires companies receiving funds from the Troubled Assets Recovery Plan to curb “excessive or luxury expenditures,” including spending on events and private jets.

Over the weekend of Feb. 27, two weeks after the Senate passed the measure, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the party fundraising arms for Senate candidates, each held their annual winter meetings in Florida.

About a dozen Democrats, including Dodd, 64, gathered at the Marriott-operated Ritz-Carlton resort in Naples, Florida. Donors who gave at least $15,000 were invited and offered a “coastal view” room at the group rate of $469, according to the Democrats’ invitation.

At least 11 Republican senators held a similar retreat at The Breakers resort in Palm Beach.

Self-denial, like taxes, is for the little people.

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