According to Buzzfeed, nine news organizations that covered Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign are questioning some of the exorbitant prices his campaign charged reporters during the campaign, including at least one case where reporters were charged over $800 for a meal, four buses to take reporters to a campaign stop when they call could have fit one one bus, and a host of other things. (Disclaimer: Buzzfeed is one of those contesting the financial charges).
I don’t think it would have surprised anyone had the Romney campaign deliberately overcharged the press to pocket the difference between the actual cost and what the media outlets paid, to put more money in either the Romney campaign or in Romney`s already well stocked pocket. But, as Buzzfeed points out, his campaign was so disorganized that it looked as though nobody was minding the store.
One campaign aide, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the bills were not artificially inflated, but rather the product of a generally mismanaged campaign. The aide said the advance team — which was tasked with arranging meals and accommodations for the press — failed to communicate with other elements of the campaign and consistently spent more money than necessary.
Indeed, reporters on the trail grew accustomed to having five or six catered meals offered to them every day, with long tables full of food awaiting them at each campaign stop. The meals often went untouched and were sometimes consumed by campaign staff. It remains unclear whether those aides shouldered some of the costs of the meals.
But Obama`s a SOCIALIST! AMMURICA!