One has to wonder if the fortunes of biz-av will turn around if presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney is elected in November. For the last three months, the Romney campaign has been chartering a Cessna CJ4 to transport the candidate to events around the country.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the campaign has laid out nearly $500,000 for the jet since January 19th. It belongs to private investment firm Easterly Capital LLC, which is registered to Darrell W. Crate, who serves as campaign treasurer.
The airplane is being duly reported to the Federal Election Commission, and the campaign is paying a charter rate as required by campaign fiance laws.
Crate served as treasurer for Romney's 2008 campaign, and was chair of the Massachusetts Republican Party while Romney was governor of that state.
The Romney campaign has been critical of President Obama's use of Air Force One for campaigning, though the White House says all trips which have used the modified 747 have been official businesses. AF1 seats over 100, while the CJ4 will seat nine ... as long as one person uses the "belted lav" ... a cushion over the airplane lavatory with a seat belt. Asked if anyone has needed to fill that 9th seat on a campaign trip, a spokeswoman for the campaign said "Yes." (File photo)