POLITICS

Joe Wilson, GOP Congressman, Faces Wider Ethics Probe Than Previously Disclosed

The congressional ethics investigation into U.S. Representative Joe Wilson of South Carolina is broader than previously disclosed, investigating beyond the use of government issued expenses that he used to buy six decorative goblets in Afghanistan last year.

Ethics investigators are also reportedly looking into Rep Wilson's foreign trips as a whole. Since he joined congress, Wilson's overseas travel has cost taxpayers about $100,000 in itemized expenses.

McClatchy reports:

That total puts Wilson at No. 29 among the 435 members of the House -- and at No. 39 among 730 members who've served since 1994, according to data published in the Congressional Record, the official proceedings of the House and Senate and analyzed by Congressional Quarterly.

Because most of Wilson's trips have been to visit U.S. troops around the world, they've entailed significant additional costs beyond the $100,000 -- including large sums of non-itemized, taxpayer-covered funds to pay for U.S. Air Force planes used to transport him and other lawmakers.

Rep Wilson defended his travel, saying they are required as a member of the House Armed Services Committee.