E&C GOP Probe Energy Secretary on Frequent International Travel
Washington, D.C. — House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations Chair Morgan Griffith (R-VA) sent a letter to Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm regarding her use of taxpayer funded travel after she made four trips to Puerto Rico in the past five months, in addition to international travel.
“The frequency and duration of these trips raise concerns regarding your attention to your other duties, particularly in light of climbing energy costs and intensifying threats to the United States’ energy independence. We understand the importance of stabilizing and modernizing Puerto Rico’s electric grid but question whether your frequent and extended presence is critical to these activities.”
- In addition to two trips to Puerto Rico in the fall of 2022, Secretary Granholm recently made two week-long trips to Puerto Rico in February and March of this year.
- In 2022, she traveled to France, Australia, Mexico, and Singapore in addition to numerous domestic trips.
- Additionally, she has seemingly prioritized visits to these international locations before finally visiting Eastern Washington’s Hanford nuclear reservation site—one of the most costly and challenging cleanup sites in the Department of Energy’s Office of Environmental Management complex.
- "This trip will easily cost the taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars between the advance teams, security, support staff, and more," said one former DOE official to the Free Beacon.
- "We are in the middle of a domestic and global energy crisis, and under her watch the American people are paying the price for this administration's failed energy policies," the former official added. "Unless Granholm is there installing the solar panels herself, there is no reason for her to be on the ground for that long."
The Chairs have requested the following information by May 8, 2023, for all domestic and international official travel trips from February 25, 2021, to the present:
- The names and job titles of all staff, including security, support staff, and advance teams, who accompanied Secretary Granholm on each trip.
- Itineraries for the Secretary and all accompanying staff for each trip.
- An itemized list of expenses incurred during the duration of the Secretary’s travels for herself and all accompanying staff, including transportation to and from her destination.
- A list of official activities and meetings undertaken during the Secretary’s travels and all accompanying meeting minutes.
CLICK HERE to read the letter.
CLICK HERE for information related to the Department of Energy Inspector General Teri Donaldson’s recent testimony before the committee.
CLICK HERE to read about the committee’s efforts to lower energy costs across the board for Americans by passing H.R. 1, the Lower Energy Costs Act.