Watchdog finds Susan Pompeo did not get written approval for majority of taxpayer funded trips

Washington The State Department watchdog concluded that the majority of trips taken by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s wife, Susan, over a two-year period took place without written approval from the State Department, despite the fact they were considered official travel and paid for by the US government.

The report by the State Department inspector general found that between April 2018 to April 2020 Susan Pompeo took eight official trips and there was only documentation of written approval for two of them. The remaining trips were given verbal sign off by the under secretary of management, he told the investigators.
When a trip is considered official travel, also known as representational travel, the government pays for it; otherwise any non-official passengers on those flights must reimburse the government.
“For family travel that is considered representational, not only does the family member not have to reimburse the government for the flight(s), but he or she also receives significant travel support from the Department at no cost, including provision of a control officer and many hours of support from Department employees,” the report explains.
    The inspector general’s office did not suggest that anyone be fired or face penalties as a result of their findings, though they did suggest that the department get written approval for all future travel by family members.
      “OIG recommends that in order to ensure that the Department has appropriate documentation for internal control and recordkeeping purposes, the Office of the Secretary seek and gain written approval for all representational travel, and that the Under Secretary for Management or other authorizing official document in writing the approval for all representational trips by any family members,” the report states.
      The investigation was the result of a whistleblower complaint into travel by Susan Pompeo. There is still an ongoing State OIG investigation into the Pompeo’s misuse of State Department resources.

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