Paul Gosar has spent more on travel than anyone in House after targeting ‘wasteful spending’

Paul Gosar blames ‘budget-busting’ travel bills on

Bevan Hurley
Thursday 05 May 2022 23:34
Comments
<p>Arizona’s Paul Gosar has spent more on travel than any other House member </p>

Arizona’s Paul Gosar has spent more on travel than any other House member

GOP lawmaker Paul Gosar spent nearly $1m on taxpayer-funded travel over the past five years, the most of any House member, while touting his credentials as a fiscal conservative.

The far-right Arizona congressman travelled to events in Europe, Texas and Florida on the public purse, spending more than two House delegates from the Pacific Ocean territory of Guam, according to an anaylsis from the Moonlight Foundation, a non-partisan watchdog, obtained by CNN.

Lawmakers in neighbouring Arizona districts spent about 40 per cent of Dr Gosar’s total bill on airfares, accommodation, parking, rental cars and mileage.

In a statement on his official website, the congressman claims to be taking on “bloated” government spending.

“I will continue to cut wasteful federal spending wherever I can,” he wrote.

A spokesperson for Dr Gosar told CNN the spending was appropriate and was higher than other members due to Dr Gosar’s role as chair of the House’s Western Caucus from 2016 to 2020.

This required him and four aides to travel extensively throughout Arizona and the rest of the country, the spokesperson said.

“Unlike out-of-touch politicians, Congressman Gosar travels back to his district in Arizona every week, then hits the road, to work tirelessly on behalf of his constituents of the Fourth Congressional District,” the unnamed spokesperson told CNN.

Dr Gosar’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In July 2018, Dr Gosar disclosed he had received $9,500 from a group called the Middle East Forum for a three day trip to the United Kingdom where he spoke at a rally for a the imprisoned far-right activist Tommy Robinson.

According to azcentral.com, Dr Gosar claimed to be meeting with UK politicians while he was attended the fundraiser dinner with Steve Bannon.

During the same period, he charged taxpayers $2,300 for commercial flights, during a period when no other travel expenses were filed, according to the Moonlight Foundation.

Congressional members’ travel expenses are mostly hidden from public scrutiny as they can be filed under a “general category” without providing further details.

Paul Gosar has frequently courted controversy during his time in Congress

Moonlight Foundation executive director Karen Goll told CNN Dr Gosar’s spending ballooned after he won his second congressional race in 2012.

“His office’s travel budget started to skyrocket with budget-busting charges on lodging, car rentals, and transportation.”

Dr Gosar has frequently courted controversy during his time in office. He has attended numerous white nationalist rallies, and pushed the ‘big lie’ that Donald Trump won the 2020 election.

In November 2021, Dr Gosar tweeted a violent anime video showing him killing Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

He was censured by the House, the first time in more than a decade a lawmaker had been rebuked in that way, and stripped of his committee assignments.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in