Update: How Much Did Obama’s Copenhagen Failure Cost You?

Conn Carroll /

Two weeks ago, CBS News filed a story on the over 100 people (including Senators, Representatives, their spouses, and staff) that flew to the failed United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Copenhagen on the taxpayers dime. At the time, Congress had not yet filed their expense report. CBS has now followed up on the story.

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From CBS’ report:

For 15 Democratic and 6 Republican Congressmen, food and rooms for two nights cost $4,406 tax dollars each. That’s $2,200 a day – more than most Americans spend on their monthly mortgage payment.

Pelosi’s office did offer an explanation for the high room charges. Those who stayed just two nights were charged a six-night minimum at the five-star Marriott. One staffer said, they strongly objected to no avail. You may ask how they’ll negotiate a climate treaty, if they can’t get a better deal on hotel rooms.

All told, CBS put the final tab at over $1.1 million. And that was just for the legislative branch. That did not include the over 60 members of the Obama administration who flew to Copenhagen for failure on the taxpayers’ dime.

But even worse would have been if Obama had succeeded in signing an agreement. According to a Heritage Foundation analysis of the Waxman-Markey energy legislation, under cap-and-trade, for a household of four, energy costs (electric, natural gas, gasoline expenses) would rise by $436 in 2012 and by $1,241 by 2035, averaging $829 over that period. Higher energy costs would increase the cost of many other products and services. Overall, Waxman-Markey would reduce gross domestic product by $393 billion annually and by a total of $9.4 trillion by 2035.