Report: Federal judges partied at ‘basketball junket’ on taxpayer dime

http://twitter.com/#!/MacFarlaneNews/status/319437182731448320

Scott MacFarlane, the Cox Media reporter who broke the story about the TSA exposing a teenage girl’s breasts, is tweeting about a new investigation today. Federal judicial employees reportedly blew over $100,000 on a 2011 conference.

Another junket by federal judges?Even amid budget crisis. Just got strong reaction from Sen Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) to story I’m working

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

An unknown sum was spent on travel and expenses for the 2012 Eighth Circuit Judicial Conference, which included a “social program” called “The College Basketball Experience.” The conference’s “Social Events” page includes an all-caps “WARNING” for attendees: “This is not a museum. You may sweat.”

MacFarlane reports that the Sweatin’ with the Judges shindig included a slam-dunk competition and free throw contest. Your tax dollars at work!

Agenda for federal judges’ conference in Kansas City in 2012.What stands out to you, taxpayers? twitter.com/MacFarlaneNews…

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

Taxpayers sent federal judges to Kansas City for 2012 conference.Including special performance of Elton John’s “Aida” & cocktail party

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

Your tax money sent federal judges to Kansas City in 2012.Conference that *also*included bball slam-dunk competition, free throw contest

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

8th circuit judicial conference cost taxpayers $100k in ’11. Cost unknown for ’12 event which included “College Basketball Experience” party

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

Slam dunk competition, free throw shooting contest offered to judges who attended 8th circuit judicial conference in 2013. Tax $ paid travel

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

The amazing things your tax money funds.You paid to send federal judiciary staff to —-> twitter.com/MacFarlaneNews…

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

Do government conferences need “social committees”?8th circuit court conference in 2012 staged judges’ trip to Elton John’s “Aida” show

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

Good question. The taxpayers deserve answers.

Update:

MacFarlane reports that your tax dollars paid for 91 federal judges to get the “Basketball Experience.”

NEW: 91 federal judges attended 2012 basketball party in Kansas City. W/ slam dunk contest, shooting competition. Your tax $ flew them in

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

Here’s the invitation for the 8th circuit court judges conference in 2012. Look at how they promote the opening night twitter.com/MacFarlaneNews…

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

106 federal judges attended Tony award winning “Aida” during 2012 Kansas City conference. Your tax $ paid for travel twitter.com/MacFarlaneNews…

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 3, 2013

Update:

Read more about MacFarlane’s investigation here:

My investigation into the “basketball junket” attended by 92 federal judges.Your tax $ paid for the travel –wsbtv.com/news/news/loca…

— Scott MacFarlane (@MacFarlaneNews) April 4, 2013