Politicians Say the Dumbest Things: Nuñez is 'Middle Class'?
I almost choked on my Cheerios this morning when reading a front-page story in the Los Angeles Times about California Assembly leader Fabian Nuñez's spending habits of campaign funds. According to the Times story:
The spending, listed in mandatory filings with the state, includes $47,412 on United, Lufthansa and Air France airlines this year; $8,745 at the exclusive Hotel Arts in Barcelona, Spain; $5,149 for a "meeting" at Cave L'Avant Garde, a wine seller in the Bordeaux region of France; a total of $2,562 for two "office expenses" at Vuitton, two years apart; and $1,795 for a "meeting" at Le Grand Colbert, a venerable Parisian restaurant.
But whatever. That part of the story has been told a thousand times over by other politicians throughout history. What really induced the gag reflex was this gem by the Speaker of the Assembly, who also reps LA's 46th district:
In the interview, Nuñez said he wouldn't need to use his $5.3-million "Friends of Fabian Nuñez" campaign account to offset travel costs if he were independently wealthy. The speaker's job pays $130,062 a year plus a tax-free $170 for expenses each day the Assembly is in session. "There's not too big a difference," he said, "between how I live and how most middle-class people live."