Clinton at State Dept: Commercial Flights Are Too ‘Burdensome’

August 24, 2016

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton thought that flying commercial would be too "burdensome" when she was secretary of state and once requested that her closest aide, Huma Abedin, check on the availability of an Air Force plane to fly from Washington, D.C. to Westchester, N.Y.

Newly released emails, which were part of watchdog group Judicial Watch’s Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the State Department, reveal Clinton tried to avoid taking the commercial shuttle by taking an Air Force plane instead in an exchange from May 4, 2009, the New York Post reported.

"Do you think we could get a plane for Westchester flight back tonight?" Clinton wrote in an email released this week as part of an ongoing Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the State Department.

"It’s going to rain all day and I still don’t feel great so the idea of playing a guessing game w the shuttle is really burdensome to me. What do you think? Could be anytime that works for the Air Force," she added.

An hour and 40 minutes later, Abedin replied: "Yes of course. Looking into it. Around what time do u think?"

"Six or 7–does that work?" Clinton asked.

It is unclear whether Clinton eventually secured an Air Force plane on that day or took a shuttle, the hourly commercial plane service between New York and Washington. The Post noted that the email could draw criticism from those who think the Air Force should only transport the president and vice president on Air Force I and Air Force II.

Clinton has a long history of flying on private jets versus over commercial flights. The Washington Free Beacon reported earlier this year that the Clinton campaign spent over $2 million on private jets.

The campaign of Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton has poured more than $2 million into the use of private jets this election cycle, according to a review of its expenditures.

Federal Election Commission documents reviewed by the Washington Free Beacon found that Hillary for America made a total of 48 payments from June 1, 2015, to Jan. 29, 2016, to Executive Fliteways, a New York-based private jet company, running up a tab of $2,128,293 for the campaign.

Clinton also faced scrutiny in 2014 over her flight from Long Island, New York to the Iowa Steak Fry event outside Des Moines, Iowa, MSNBC reported at the time.

The Iowa Steak Fry spent more than $50,000 flying Bill and Hillary Clinton to the Democratic event outside Des Moines in September honoring retiring Sen. Tom Harkin.

New financial disclosure forms to the Federal Election Commission shows the committee that organized the event made a $50,099 payment for "travel expenses" to Executive Fliteways Inc, a Long Island, NY based charter jet company. According to Bloomberg News, the payment was for the former first couple.

It was the second largest single expense for the Steak Fry, after food.