President Barack Obama, who for the last eight years has lived the lifestyle of an 18th-century monarch while liberally billing 21st-century taxpayers, mounted up a massive tab when he met up with his friend Tiger Woods to play golf.
“An audit by the Government Accountability Office that was reported Wednesday revealed that a 2013 golf trip taken by President Obama to play with Tiger Woods in Florida cost taxpayers $3.6 million dollars,” Fox Sports reports. “Obama, who has unsurprisingly taken some flak for being a golfing president (he played his 300th round in August), flew to the Floridian Yacht and Golf Club and received instruction from Butch Harmon, Woods’ former coach.”
Via the Washington Times:
The audit said the costs included operation of Air Force One, at about $200,000 per hour of flight, plus a virtual squadron of “supporting aircraft and U.S. Coast Guard small boats,” as well as per diem and other travel expenses for an unspecified number of Pentagon and Homeland Security personnel required to support the president’s golf weekend. In all, [President Obama’s] four-day excursion required six additional military transport planes flying eight missions with at least 22 total flight legs, involving 14 commercial airports and Air Force bases ranging from Joint Base McGuire in New Jersey to Dyess Air Force Base in Texas.
Of course, those inclined to defend Obama and his opulence will point out that heads of state and royal families all over the world travel, even for pleasure, on taxpayer expense. While true, the Obamas have created a league of their own.
Contrast the Obamas with the British Royal Family, a larger group of people, totally dependent on the state. The preservation of the British Royal family, on average, costs the British taxpayer $60 million dollars a year. That figure also includes the Royal family’s security expenses. Meanwhile, the Obama’s 2013 trip to Hawaii alone cost the taxpayer $4 million dollars.
That’s one trip, for one family, once.
Follow Dylan Gwinn on Twitter: @themightygwinn