Rachel Maddow isn’t one to shy away from anything – and we mean anything – that could possibly lead to the takedown of President Trump.
And she isn’t afraid to drag the U.S. Military into the dirt along with her efforts.
The MSNBC host, who was a lead co-conspirator of the Russian collusion delusion, glommed on to a dubious report from Politico that alleged an Air Force crew made an “odd” stop near Trump’s Turnberry Resort in Scotland.
The House Oversight Committee has been investigating why the crew on the C-17 transport to and from the Middle East made the stop.
The HOC hasn’t received an answer from the Pentagon since they began asking questions in April, according to Politico.
The latest stopover is part of a broader investigation into multiple expenditures at and near Turnberry Resort, especially the refueling of military aircraft at the Glasgow’s Prestwick Airport.
The “odd” stops are being scrutinized by Democrats who believe it’s a way to line the Trump’s pockets as U.S. military members were reportedly given rooms at cut-rates and free rounds of golf.
Maddow and critics of the stops claim the $11 million worth of fuel purchased at Prestwick would have been less if purchased at a U.S. military base.
These allegations are in question, but it didn’t stop MSNBC’s Maddow from breathlessly reporting Monday night and even contemplating the “integrity” of the U.S. military.
“If you have not seen it yet, you are going to want to sit down,” Maddow introduced her segment before diving into the report.
“Now miraculously, now that Donald Trump is president, American military cargo planes have started refueling at that airport,” Maddow said. Even though “it would be cheaper to the military if that fuel had been purchased at a U.S. military base.”
The Air Force refuted Politico’s findings, stating that the C-17 stop was “not unusual.”
“Every two and half minutes an Air Force transport aircraft takes off or lands somewhere around the globe. As our aircrews serve on these international airlift missions, they follow strict guidelines on contracting for hotel accommodations and all expenditures of taxpayer dollars,” Brig. Gen. Ed Thomas said in the statement. “In this case, they made reservations through the Defense Travel System and used the closest available and least expensive accommodations to the airfield within the crews’ allowable hotel rates. While we are still reviewing the trip records, we have found nothing that falls outside the guidelines associated with selecting stopover airports on travel routes and hotel accommodations for crew rest.”
Thomas acknowledged that there are ongoing investigations into overseas spending at Trump resorts, but maintained the 7 members on the C-17 stayed at Turnberry on the way to Kuwait because of cheaper room rates. Politico reported it could not verify the rates the U.S. military members were given.
Politico’s report largely referred to the June 21 document request sent by House Oversight Committee Democrats to the secretary of defense. According to Washington Examiner’s Byron York, the Dem’s document left out some key facts.
The Air Force made many stops at Prestwick before Trump took office, according to public documents. It also signed a contract for refueling at Prestwick in 2016, again before Trump became president. There are many public documents of stops at Prestwick York noted, “according to information provided by Air Force officials, planes stopped at Prestwick 95 times in 2015, 145 times in 2016, 180 times in 2017, 257 times in 2018, and 259 times through August 2019.”
The Air Force stated that the decision to use Prestwick was both a financial and strategic one:
Air Force mobility aircraft, primarily C-17s, have increasingly leveraged Prestwick as a stopover location between 2015-2019 due to several key factors. Prestwick’s 24-hour-a-day operations make it a more viable option for aircraft traveling to and from the U.S. Central Command Area of Responsibility compared to other military stopover locations that have imposed increasingly restrictive operating hours. Additionally, Air Mobility Command [AMC] issued a flight directive to mobility crews in June 2017 designed to increase efficiencies by standardizing routing locations, with Prestwick being among the top five locations recommended for reasons such as more favorable weather than nearby Shannon Airport, and less aircraft parking congestion than locations on the European continent that typically support AMC’s high priority airlift missions.
Moreover, the Department of Defense independently contracted Prestwick at “standardized prices,” which largely puts to rest Maddow’s assertion that it would be cheaper to buy fuel on U.S. military bases.
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