Trump to decide Tom Price’s fate ‘sometime tonight’

Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

President Donald Trump said he would decide the fate of Health Secretary Tom Price “sometime tonight” as he weighs whether to fire the Georgia Republican for billing taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of travel on private jets.

The president has repeatedly expressed his frustration with Price in the wake of reports documenting his pricey trips around the world on the public’s dime. A review by Politico revealed that Price has tallied more than $1 million in taxpayer-funded trips to locales from Africa to Georgia’s coast.

“He’s a very fine man. I certainly don’t like the optics,” he told reporters. “I’m not happy, I can tell you that. I’m not happy.”

Price, who represented a suburban Atlanta district for six terms, has tried to quell the uproar by promising to reimburse taxpayers for part of the costs of his travel on private charter planes. And he said he will stop taxpayer-funded travel on private jets and cooperate with a review of his travel by his department’s inspector general.

A half-dozen House Democrats have since called for Price’s resignation. His onetime Georgia colleagues, meanwhile, have largely kept their distance, saying that they would withhold judgement until after the health department’s inspector general finishes its review of Price’s travel.

“All of my political career I’ve fought for the taxpayers,” Price said. “It is clear to me that in this case, I was not sensitive enough to my concern for the taxpayer. I know as well as anyone that the American people want to know that their hard-earned dollars are being spent wisely by government officials.”

Read more: Price’s Cabinet post in doubt after flights aboard taxpayer-funded jets

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6 comments
38 year navy vet
38 year navy vet

HHS SEC Tom Price is supposed to manage a $1.3 trillion budget, 65,000 employees, three hurricanes, Healthcare legislation and an opioid crisis and the Press thinks he should always take public transportation along with his security detail? Yes, his life has been threatened as were the lives of his predecessors SEC Sebelius and Burwell! We expect him to be everywhere, anytime and be effective and efficient and then we make it impossible! This witch hunt is ridiculous. I guess billionaires like SEC Betsy DeVos, kudos to her, who are able to furnish their own private jets are our only options as cabinet members.

PDPDP8
PDPDP8

THAT is a totally stupid response. I road a train from DC to Philly 6 months ago and it was $14.00 and 1 hours 20 minutes. Mr. Price thinks he is too good...so he spends $10,000 on a private jet. Dont care who you are your time is not that much more precious than mine. For the record it took 2 and 1/2 hours for MR.Price to fly in a Lear jet.

RufusATL
RufusATL

@38 year navy vet Too late, pal.  He just got fired....ooops, "resigned."  Well, it's another Friday afternoon at the 'ole ranch..............

RoadScholar
RoadScholar

Bet he gets a pardon and stays! He should pay the entire bill for the use of the jets.

PDPDP8
PDPDP8

Since he has resigned he will not pay the $51,300.