Sunday, July 22, 2012
The traveling man
From the Daily News:
Campaign cash gave Queens State Sen. Malcolm Smith a ticket to travel the globe.
Smith drained more than $41,000 from his campaign war chest on airfare, rental cars and hotel stays in more than a dozen cities, the Daily News has learned.
As his cash-strapped Democratic colleagues struggled to boost their campaign war chests, Smith’s donor-funded world tour included stops in Beijing, Shanghai, Montreal, Chicago, Tampa, Baltimore, Philadelphia, San Antonio and Saratoga Springs.
Along the way Smith’s campaign paid for golf at the exclusive Breakers resort in Palm Beach, barbecue at Dick’s Last Resort in San Antonio, accommodations at the Beijing Grand Hotel and a “meeting” at Big Daddys liquors in West Palm Beach, campaign records show.
Closer to home, Smith billed his campaign for hotel stays in Newark, Newburgh and the Crowne Plaza LaGuardia — which is just a few miles from Smith’s district.
“With all that time spent traveling, did he spend any time in Albany?” quipped Dick Dadey of watchdog group Citizens Union.
“His liberal use of campaign funds for travel to far flung locations just shows how bad our campaign finance laws are in New York,” Dadey added.