LANSING, Mich. (Great Lakes News) – New information about Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s flight to Florida in March has the head of Michigan’s House Oversight Committee looking into hearings to dig into the finances used to fund it.
Rep. Steve Johnson (R-Wayland) is considering investigating the financial arrangements behind Whitmer’s travel, after documents revealed an organization created in 2018 to fund the governor’s inauguration paid for most of the flight. The Michigan Transition 2019 fund paid $27,521 while Whitmer chipped in $855.
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Air Eagle, which owns the plane on which Whitmer flew, is not authorized for charter flights.
Whitmer’s story has changed numerous times over the last two months. When the March trip came to light in April, Whitmer said the two-day trip centered around caring for her “chronically ill” father. Uncovered documents now reveal that trip lasted longer.
Tori Sachs, executive director for Michigan Rising Action, has called for Whitmer’s use of the nonprofit for her travel to be investigated.
“501c4’s are governed by IRS and there is no legal theory where reimbursing $800 for a $27K flight solves anything,” Sachs tweeted. “Whitmer’s personal use of her 501c4 account funds must be investigated.”
Meanwhile Whitmer’s Chief of Staff, Joanne Huls, appeared to take full responsibility for her boss’ management of this trip. In a memo to staff, Huls said, “I acknowledge we could have done a better job of answering questions about this trip with more clarity while also balancing the need to protect the governor’s security, and for that I take responsibility,” Huls said in the memo.