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Transportation IG to investigate Buttigieg for use of government aircraft: memo

That investigation will explore Buttigieg's official trips taken since January 31, 2017.

Published: February 27, 2023 4:40pm

Updated: March 1, 2023 12:21am

The Department of Transportation Inspector General will investigate Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg's use of government aircraft, a memo shows.

DOT Principal Assistant Inspector General for Audits and Evaluations Charles Ward revealed the upcoming investigation in a Feb. 27 memo to the assistant secretary for administration, which Just the News obtained.

"On December 16, 2022, citing news reports regarding the Secretary of Transportation's travel on Government aircraft, Senator Marco Rubio requested that we determine whether the Secretary's use of Government aircraft for domestic and international travel complied with all applicable Federal regulations and DOT policies and procedures," the memo reads. "Accordingly, we will conduct an audit to determine whether the Office of the Secretary complied with Federal regulations, policies, and procedures regarding executive travel on DOT aircraft. The audit will focus on official trips taken since January 31, 2017."

The memo explains that while the Office of Management and Budget's guidance allows Buttigieg to travel on government aircraft, it imposes restrictions on their use. "The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has a fleet of aircraft that are operated and maintained by Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) personnel," according to the memo. "FAA uses these aircraft to perform multiple missions, including transportation for DOT and FAA senior executives."

Buttigieg has been under continuous fire over his extensive use of official travel methods. More recently, however, he has faced scrutiny for mass airline cancellations and his seemingly sluggish response to the derailment of a Norfolk Southern train carrying toxic materials near East Palestine, Ohio.

Amid the latter incident, he has faced mounting calls to resign, with some even suggesting his impeachment.

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on Twitter.

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