800 Cultural Exchange Trips in Congress Between 2006-2011, Only 5 to Israel
by Zach Pontz
In the years 2006 -2011 U.S. lawmakers and their senior staff took more than 800 cultural exchange trips courtesy of foreign governments. Of those 800 trips, only five were to Israel according to a information compiled by the Washington Post.
As the Post writes, “The trips benefit from a broad exemption from ethics rules and most Capitol Hill employees never need to disclose their participation.”
On the flip-side, 163 trips were taken to various other Middle East countries, and a total of 206 trips were taken in all to countries in which the majority population is Muslim.
The five individuals who made trips to Israel are Kent Alfred Dean Clark (2011), Rep. Steve Israel (2010), Andrew Stephen DeMott (2009), Kristine J. Michalson (2009), and Elisabeth Wright Hawkings (2008).
The full chart published by the Washington Post is posted below: