The U.S. Senate Gift Shops came under attack Friday from Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., for being a losing government venture that should be cut, but some senators' campaign committees find it very useful. Here are a few examples.
The Hatch Re-Election Committee spent $12,224 for constituent gifts at the Senate gift shops since the beginning of 2011. Carper for Senate spent $5,262 for books to auction. Menendez for Senate spent $3,780 for gifts. Pat Roberts for US Senate spent $989 for gifts. Jeff Flake for US Senate spent $828 for ornaments. Manchin for Senate spent $770 for "constituent supplies." Even Hoosiers for Mourdock spent $9,951 at the Senate gift shop for "fundraising expense."House members also crossed the Capitol to spend at the Senate gift shops. Marsha Blackburn for Congress spent $577 for auction items, in addition to her spending $2,778 for gifts at the House gift shop. Jo Bonner for Congress spent $3,341 on books, book marks, and gifts. Gallegly for Congress spent $4,256 on gifts and auction items. Yoder for Congress spent $3,525 for ornaments.
For more background on Coburn's blast, view Roll Call article.