Barney Frank retracts charge on Tim Geithner air travel
By Lori Montgomery,
It turns out Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner doesn’t make inappropriate use of military aircraft. Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) on Saturday retracted the allegation, saying he had acted “on inadequate information.”
“I have now gotten more information than I had before about the Treasury Secretary’s travel,” Frank, ranking member of the House Financial Services Committee, said in a statement. “Based on the information I have now gotten — and that I should have looked into before — I now believe that the Secretary’s travel patterns are appropriate and do not need any mandated change from us.”
In recommendations to a special congressional committee on debt reduction, Frank on Thursday urged the panel to examine Geithner’s travel, saying he never flies commercial. Instead, Frank wrote, Geithner continued a practice begun by predecessor Henry M. Paulson Jr. of using military air transport even when going to safe locations. The cost, Frank wrote, was at least $150,000 per trip.
Asked Saturday whether Geithner does use military transport, spokesman Anthony Coley said by e-mail: “He does when necessary.”
— Lori Montgomery