The news came today that Dr. Tom Price, ballyhooed by President Trump as "exceptionally qualified to replace Obamacare" when he was first nominated, has resigned as secretary of Health and Human Services after it was revealed he had taken more than $400,000 worth of private charter plane flights at taxpayers' expense.
Apparently Price's payment of $51,000 to cover what he deemed to be the fair cost of his seats on those flights, some as short as from Washington, DC to Philadelphia, wasn't good enough for President Trump. The Prez, who everybody knows is so careful about spending the taxpayers' money on travel, said he didn't like the "optics" of Price's penchant for charter airplane travel at our expense.
So, it wasn't that Price wasted money on charters or that he thought he was entitled, Trump just didn't like the the way it looked, the image it created. Also, it didn't really dovetail very well with Trump's promise to "drain the swamp."
I was around Washington and the movers and shakers there for many years, having worked as a Congressional chief of staff for two Congressmen and having had lobbying organizations as communications clients for three decades. It never ceases to amaze me, the entitled attitude of some of these people once they set foot in Washington and are kowtowed to by so many supplicants.
It happens over and over again. I just don't understand why these people never learn. I guess their egos get so out of whack they just think they're entitled and that "it won't happen to them."
But Washington doesn't work that way, especially now. Everybody who is anybody is being watched just about 24-7, including by the media who loves to jump on big shots they consider to be hypocrites. And certainly, an official who claims to be concerned about wasteful government spending, but who wastes money on extravagant travel, qualifies as the very definition of a hypocrite.
As one Facebook commenter noted, chartering a private plane to go from Washington, DC to Philadelphia is especially egregious when for $200 you can be very comfortable in a premium seat on Amtrak. And then you don't need a limo to take you downtown. In fact, that's how former Vice President Joe Biden went home every weekend.
Of course, he wasn't trying to stroke his ego.