Center for American Progress Action

RELEASE: New CAP Action Column Tracks the Waste and Abuse in Trump’s Cabinet
Press Release

RELEASE: New CAP Action Column Tracks the Waste and Abuse in Trump’s Cabinet

Washington, D.C. — As details continue to emerge about Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt’s sweetheart deal on townhouse co-owned by the wife of a top energy lobbyist, the Center for American Progress Action Fund has created a new column to track the rampant waste and abuse in the Trump administration’s cabinet.

Based on spending that has been discovered to date, President Trump’s Cabinet has spent roughly $2.6 million on extravagant travel and office upgrades. That’s more than 44 times what the average American family earned in 2016 or enough money to feed 951 seniors through the Meals on Wheels program for an entire year.

Examples of waste and abuse in Trump’s Cabinet include:

  • Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s frequent use of military planes has cost the public more than $1,001,590.
  • Former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price spent at least $1 million on chartered and military flights while in office.
  • EPA Administrator Pruitt sent more than $58,000 on chartered flights and more than $82,000 on first-class commercial flights. He also spent $43,000 on costly upgrades to his office that included an unusual, so-called privacy booth. All told, he’s wasted at least $313,000 of taxpayers’ money.
  • Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke spent $139,000 on new doors for his office suite and spent more than $14,000 on helicopter rides, including one to make sure he got back to Washington, D.C., in time to go horseback riding with Vice President Mike Pence.
  • Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson ordered $31,000 of custom office furniture—well above the $5,000 limit for such expenditures without congressional approval.

The extent of waste and abuse in Trump’s Cabinet is stunning both in terms of how many Cabinet members are involved and the lack of regard they have shown for spending taxpayer dollars. It’s just another part of the culture of corruption in the Trump administration, where the interests of the politically powerful are put before the needs of the American public.

Click here to read “Tracking Waste and Abuse in the Trump Cabinet” by Sam Berger and Gwen Calais-Haase

For more information or to talk to an expert, please contact Sam Hananel at [email protected] or 202-478-6327.