In this age of sequester-induced austerity, many overseas trips for Congress and federal agencies are being grounded.
But it’s nice to know that we aren’t giving them up entirely and becoming a boring, stay-at-home government. For example, the Government Accountability Office is dispatching a team of auditors to Bangladesh, Thailand and Malaysia this month.
On the plus side, there will be balmy temperatures and spectacular views. The negatives: sounds like a pretty work-intensive trip, and then there’s the messy business of dealing with possible human rights violations.
The GAO officials will be checking to see whether embassies there are complying with rules banning assistance to foreign security units that the State Department thinks have committed gross human rights violations, GAO says.
GAO spokesman Chuck Young noted that the agency has trimmed its travel budget by 40 percent since 2010. “But some investigations, such as this one, are prioritized for travel because fieldwork is essential,” he said.