While there have been disapproving murmurs about the potential cost of first lady Michelle Obama’s trip to China, the actual cost to taxpayers has remained mere speculation.
New documents, however, reveal that the accommodations the first lady, her daughters and her mother are enjoying were too expensive for even Vice President Joe Biden back in December.
According to the documents released last week by the government contracting website Federal Business Opportunities — and highlighted by the Weekly Standard — the cost of the Westin Chaoyang was too expensive for the vice president and his entourage.
“Westin Chaoyang — price was prohibitive when compared with St. Regis — otherwise met requirements,” the document explains. The Grand Hyatt Beijing was also eliminated because it did not meet security requirements.
“Westin Choayang expressed interest and was considered. In preliminary price comparisons, the costs were tens of thousands of dollars over the St. Regis. We requested a price reduction but a great cost difference remained,” the document adds.
In the end, Biden stayed at the St. Regis Hotel, taking up 213 hotel rooms and 1,345 room nights, at a cost of $384,479.19.