Congress spends nearly $100,000 on meditation app for staffers distressed by Jan. 6

The normal charge for the app that House staffers are offered for free is $14.99 a month or an annual fee of $69.99.

Updated: August 27, 2022 - 11:32pm

The Golden Horseshoe is a weekly designation from Just The News intended to highlight egregious examples of wasteful taxpayer spending by the government. The award is named for the horseshoe-shaped toilet seats for military airplanes that cost the Pentagon a whopping $640 each back in the 1980s.

Congress spent $96,000 for a meditation app to calm the nerves of House staffers who felt traumatized by the Jan. 6 attack, according to federal spending watchdog

Congress' agreement with a San Francisco-based health software company gave House staffers a free subscription to Calm, its meditation, sleep and relaxation app.

Ohio Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan, chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee on the legislative branch, announced the app agreement in a December, 2021 letter to staffers as part of a larger effort to address the trauma staff felt as a result of Jan. 6. 

"As we head into 2022 and prepare to mark the first anniversary of the events of January 6, 2021," Ryan wrote jointly with the subcommittee ranking member, "be assured that these offices are here to support you with their comprehensive mental and emotional support resources and to help develop and improve your resilience, growth, productivity, and overall well-being." 

The meditation app purchase was funded from a $1.9 billion emergency spending package Congress passed to enhance security after the Capitol breach.

Fox News reported that Ryan is well-known for his devotion to yoga and meditation. 

Ryan did not respond to a request for comment from Just The News.

 "This legislation was sold as a package to invest in concrete solutions to bolster our security after the events of January 6, but this is almost six figures of our tax dollars for Congressional staffers to be lulled to sleep by the voice of Matthew McConaughey," Adam Andrzejewski, CEO and Founder of OpenTheBooks told Just The News. 

"This is just another example of Washington treating itself to a special perk the rest of us have to pay for," Andrzejewski said. 

The normal charge for the app House staffers are offered for free is $14.99 a month or an annual fee of $69.99.