Hillary Clinton's private passage to India is costing American taxpayers at least $22,000, according to publicly disclosed federal contract information.
Clinton attracted media attention during her trip for saying during a speech last weekend that she lost the 2016 election because much of the United States is "backwards" and filled with people who don't like "black people getting rights" or "women getting jobs." Clinton is promoting her latest book in India and is joined on the trip by friends such as longtime aide Huma Abedin. She is also spending time visiting tourist sites.
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Clinton is in India as a private citizen. But as a former First Lady she is given U.S. Secret Service protection for life, and the State Department awarded two contracts worth $16,143 and $6,301 for her security detail's travel and lodging on the trip.
The contracts do not name Clinton but say they are awarded for the Secret Service to "support FFLOTUS," an acronym used for former first ladies, on a March 2018 trip to India. The contract was awarded by the U.S. embassy in New Delhi, which operates under the State Department's Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs.
Both contracts are for "logistic services for USSS to support FFLOTUS visit" and say they are for "travel/lodging."
It is unclear whether the two contracts account for all of the government spending related to Clinton's India trip.
Two other contracts, one worth $21,093 and another worth $23,690, were awarded by the American Consulate in Mumbai for March hotel reservations for Secret Service agents in Mumbai and Maheshwar, another town Clinton visited on her trip.
A press representative for the Secret Service said the agency could not respond to inquiries into the contracts and whether there were any other additional costs to the agency caused by the trip beyond the travel and lodging costs.
"For operational security reasons, the Secret Service does not comment specifically nor in general about the means, methods, costs, or assets associated with our protective responsibilities," said the spokesman.
Clinton reportedly fractured her arm after slipping in the bathtub of the five-star Indian resort she stayed in last Wednesday.
She was caught on camera earlier in the week unable to walk down a flight of stairs at the Jahaz Mahal in Mandu. She had to be held by both a member of her security detail and a tour guide to make it down the steps.