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Report: Pence Cost Local Police Dept. $14k When He Bolted From NFL Game

When the fury over the National Anthem protests that have enveloped the National Football League was at a fever pitch, Vice President Mike Pence decided to take in a game. Pence would arrive to see the Indianapolis Colts take on the San Francisco 49ers, but he didn’t stay all that long. As soon as he saw players take a knee for the anthem, Pence made the decision to exit stage left. He left the stadium after the anthem finished playing, but a new report suggests that was quite an expensive few minutes.

As the Huffington Post shares, documents obtained by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington reveal that Pence’s early exit led to an additional expense of $14,163 to the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department. So how on earth could that possibly cost the department so much coin?

According to the report, the exorbitant figure includes multiple teams working traffic, security, as well as overtime costs. While it certainly sounds like the department needs to spend some time getting a handle on overtime and whatnot, CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder feels there are bigger problems afoot.

“The tone is set at the top when it comes to this administration’s disregard for ethics,” Bookbinder said in a statement. “Vice President Pence should know better than to use taxpayer money to make a rhetorical point, but carelessness with taxpayer money seems to be a common theme with senior administration officials.”

Call us crazy, but it sounds like Bookbinder may have a bone to pick with the entire Trump administration. While his point on wasteful expenses is duly noted, there are costs attached to the protection of members of the Trump administration. As the Vice President of the United States, Pence is entitled to that protection.

Shouldn’t the costs attached to such things factor into the decision-making process of elected officials? In a perfect world, of course it would - but reality suggests that it’s an afterthought. It would certainly be lovely to see that mindset change, and perhaps Bookbinder and company can help to lead the charge. However, labeling all senior administration officials as being guilty of “carelessness with taxpayer money” is hardly a great way to make inroads into constructive dialogue.

As for Pence’s exit itself, President Donald Trump would hop on social media to take responsibility for what happened.

“I asked @VP Pence to leave stadium if any players kneeled, disrespecting our country. I am proud of him and @SecondLadyKaren,” he wrote.

Trump has taken umbrage with the anthem protests in very public fashion, which led to the protests growing even larger. Lo and behold, the protests suddenly popped up on the radar of league officials, and they engaged in dialogue with the players to figure out how they could help them express themselves in a less inflammatory fashion. It’s unclear why league officials were unable to take that step before Trump spoke out about the issue. We’ll resist the urge to speculate on that, but we’ll note that it’s at least finally being addressed.

Source: HuffPost
Photo: YouTube

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