Unreported: 30 Democrats’ shutdown junket to Puerto Rico

by WorldTribune Staff, January 14, 2019

On the same day that some 800,000 federal workers missed their first paycheck due to the government shutdown, a group of 30 Democratic Party lawmakers headed to sunny Puerto Rico to party.

The Democrats hopped a charter plane to mingle on the Caribbean island over the weekend with 109 lobbyists and corporate executives, including honchos from Facebook, Microsoft and Amazon.

Sen. Bob Menendez on the beach in Puerto Rico on Jan. 12. / Twitter

President Donald Trump tweeted on Jan. 12: “We have a massive Humanitarian Crisis at our Southern Border. We will be out for a long time unless the Democrats come back from their “vacations” and get back to work. I am in the White House ready to sign!”

While staying at a seaside resort where rooms go for more than $400 per night, the Democrats even made time to see the hit Broadway show “Hamilton” and attend three parties including one with the show’s cast, according to a report by the Washington Examiner.

A 737 was chartered for the Democrat members of Congress, their families, and chiefs of staff to attend the weekend event. A memo from the junket said the weather would be a balmy 80 degrees. The dress code was “resort casual.”

Even after a photograph emerged on Jan. 12 of a shirtless Sen. Bob Menendez on the beach, the Dems’ party posse received little coverage from the corporate media.

CNN, which has slammed conservatives for allegedly objecting to its stories chronicling the pain the shutdown is reportedly causing many, made no mention of the junket.

NBC News covered it only in glowing terms, with an article titled, “Latino House Democrats to make show of new strength in Puerto Rico”.

CBS News followed NBC’s lead, describing the Democrats’ partying as a “fact-finding mission.”

According to the Washington Examiner’s report, the Democrats who attended the Congressional Hispanic Caucus BOLD PAC winter retreat in San Juan planned to meet with officials and discuss the cleanup after Hurricane Maria.

But the weekend was also “packed with free time for the members and their families on the trip,” the report said.

A memo describing the trip stated: “We are excited for you to join us for CHC BOLD PAC’s 2019 Winter Retreat in San Juan, Puerto Rico! Each year, this retreat serves as a way for our CHC BOLD PAC Members and friends in the D.C. community to come together to escape the cold and discuss our shared priorities for a stronger and more prosperous country.”

The memo listed 109 lobbyists and corporate executives, which is a rate of 3.6 lobbyists for every Democrat on hand. The list included those from R.J. Reynolds, Facebook, Comcast, Amazon, PhRMA, Microsoft, Intel, Verizon, and unions such as the National Education Association.


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