A member of Congress used to have to specifically report the details if they traveled on someone else’s dime. As of last week, that rule was lifted with no public announcement. National Journal reports:
The move, made behind closed doors and without a public announcement by the House Ethics Committee, reverses more than three decades of precedent. Gifts of free travel to lawmakers have appeared on the yearly financial form dating back its creation in the late 1970s, after the Watergate scandal. National Journal uncovered the deleted disclosure requirement when analyzing the most recent batch of yearly filings.
For a group of officials that considers an adjustment to their burrito order worthy of a press release and a television appearance, that this change was made literally behind closed doors tells us everything we need to know about it.