Magazine article Insight on the News

Follow That Fact!

Magazine article Insight on the News

Follow That Fact!

Article excerpt

For those who are not fond of winter, Washington has been a good place of which to steer clear. Some members of Congress gave the wheel a good, sharp spin, veering off to warmer climes of Honolulu and the Bahamas during February. But these were not purposeless galavantings. Our legislators went in search of "facts" and therefore qualified, under new gift rules, to be reimbursed by their hosts for their efforts.

According to research by the Associated Press, winter factfinding missions thus far have involved:

* A trip by Rep. Jon Christensen, a Nebraska Republican, to Las Vegas, Houston and Orlando, Fla.

* A trip by Christensen, Maryland Democrat Steny Hoyer and California Democrat Calvin Dooley to address the National Association of Home Builders. At least two congressional aides also attended the Florida convention in late January.

* Trips by Rep. Maxine Waters, a California Democrat, to address the National Newspaper Publishers Association in the Bahamas and the African American Association of Hawaii in Honolulu.

* Trips by Rep. Charles Norwood, a Georgia Republican and dentist, to address dental conventions in Orlando, Nashville and Dallas.

* A trip by Rep. George Miller, a California Democrat, to Phoenix to speak to the National Indian Gaming Association and to tour two tribal casinos. He took an aide along with him.

* A trip by Rep. Joe Barton, a Texas Republican, to Scottsdale, Ariz., to address the National Association of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers. He took his wife, Janet.

* A ski trip by Sen. Trent Lott, a Mississippi Republican, and his wife during which the senator addressed a meeting in Aspen, Colo., sponsored by Domino's Pizza. The Lotts picked up their own tab for their subsequent skiing.

* A mission to Israel by some 28 House and Senate staff members sponsored by the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York, the American Israel Education Foundation. Project Interchange and the Arab American Institute.

* A journey by Karen Nelson, an aide to Rep. Henry Waxman, a California Democrat, to serve as an expert adviser at a South African health conference at the urging of the Kaiser Family Foundation. Other international destinations for staff members included Cuba, Singapore, Taiwan, China and Indonesia.

* A trip by Rep. Jim Ross Lightfoot, an Iowa Republican, who flew his own plane from Kansas City, Mo. …

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