Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin asked to use a government jet for his honeymoon with his wife to travel to Scotland, France, and Italy the beginning of the summer, prompting some interest from the Treasury Department’s Office of the Inspector General.
The request for a U.S. Air Force jet was put into writing by Mnuchin’s office, but was dismissed by Treasury Department officials as unnecessary upon looking into the situation. Estimates say it could cost $25,000 per hour to operate the jet, an Air Force spokesman said, according to ABC News.
An official inquiry concerning the request has been opened within the inspector general’s office.
A Treasury Department spokesperson said the government jet was requested to ensure the secretary would have a secure means of communication, the ABC News report said.
“The Secretary is a member of the National Security Council and has responsibility for the Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence,” the spokesman said in a statement. “It is imperative that he have access to secure communications, and it is our practice to consider a wide range of options to ensure he has these capabilities during his travel, including the possible use of military aircraft.”
However, Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., told ABC News that the request to use a government jet for a honeymoon goes against common sense.
“You don’t need a giant rulebook of government requirements to just say yourself, ‘This is common sense, it’s wrong,'” Wyden said. “That’s just slap your forehead stuff.”
The Treasury Department’s Office of the Inspector General is also investigating a trip Mnuchin took last month to Kentucky to determine if he used the trip to capture an optimal view of the solar eclipse with his wife, Louise Linton.
However, Mnuchin’s office dismissed claims the trip was connected to the eclipse and said he worked in the viewing around official business. Additionally, the Treasury Department said Mnuchin would reimburse the government for Linton’s…