Senator Mary Landrieu's (D-LA) release on Friday of the findings from an internal report that admitted taxpayers paid $33,727 for chartered flights she took to campaign events between 2002 and 2014 has raised more questions than it answers.
Dear Colleague: On February 6, 2002, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) clarified the scope of its travel allocation regulation concerning mixed purpose travel, i.e. a trip that involves stops for campaign as well as official activities . . . It is the Committee's understanding that as clarified the FEC regulation will allow expenses for a trip that is mixed purpose to be pro-rated between expenses of (i) official travel paid with Senate funds and (ii) campaign travel paid with campaign funds, to appropriately reflect the travel expenses associated with each purpose of the trip.
For example, if a Senator flies to a state for two campaign and two official events (1) absent something unusual in the character of the events, Ethics Committee rulings would permit the transportation to be equally divided between appropriated funds and campaign funds (if evaluation of the factors noted above so indicates, this equal division should be adjusted as necessary to accurately reflect the purposes of the travel), or (ii) the campaign or the Senator's funds may be used to pay for all of the transportation. As always, caution in the expenditure of official funds is advised.
MANESS: LANDRIEU MUST PROVIDE 'FULL DISCLOSURE' OR REFUND ALL FLIGHTS TO TAXPAYERS