The Price Is Wrong!!!!

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This is the part where “The Price Is Right” music plays in your head.

The price, of course, is for the trip to India President Obama is about to take. According to conservative rabble-rouser Mike Huckabee and Rep.  Michele Backmann, President Obama’s trip will be costing $200 million per day!

WOW! Great Headline!

Too bad it’s almost certainly absurdly way off the mark and wrong. Here is some examples of the costs of previous trips, made during the Clinton administration.

The GAO said that Clinton’s trips to Africa, Chile and China in 1998 cost at least $42.8 million, $10.5 million and $18.8 million, respectively — not counting the still-classified cost of providing Secret Service protection.

In Africa, Clinton was accompanied by about 1,300 individuals — not including members of the Secret Service — representing the White House, the Department of Defense and other federal agencies. The president visited six countries in 12 days, which means the trip cost $3.6 million per day.

Clinton made the five-day Chile trip in order to attend the second Summit of the Americas — a meeting of 34 heads of state or governments from countries in the Americas — and to hold meetings with the president of Chile. About 600 individuals accompanied the president on the trip, which we calculated would have cost $2.1 million per day.

When Clinton visited China to conduct talks with the president of China, he brought along about 500 individuals. The trip lasted nine days, which works out to a little less than $2.1 million per day.
The total cost including Secret Service protection would of course be somewhat higher, but even doubling or tripling those figures and adding in an adjustment for inflation would not produce anything close to the figure given by the Indian news article for Obama’s trip.

Although there has been some inflation since the Clinton years, the cost for security is probably higher now, post 9/11, than it was during the Clinton years, and the White House isn’t releasing the cost of this trip (which they probably should), I’m certain that there is no way they could possibly spend $200 million dollars a day, which is about $10 million less than we spend per day on the war on Afghanistan, which is estimated at $190 million per day….

Hey, why don’t we start cost cutting there!

Anyway, speaking of “The Price Is Right”, the Huckabee / Backmann / Rush is about as wrong as Jose’s first bid. This poor guy at least has an excuse for being so wrong. He’s a guy. He’s in the Navy. Probably doesn’t have much time to spend pricing stuff in between sailing the world and all that… Now, if the showcase would have included something involving beer and kegs and what not, then, well, he probably would have certain got the price much closer to right.

Hat Tip: David @ The Debate Link.

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