Lawmakers defend Galapagos Islands trip

Representative Frank Lucas (R - OK, 3rd District)

Representative Frank Lucas (R - OK, 3rd District)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Congressman Frank Lucas is defending a trip to the Galapagos Islands after the television show "Inside Edition" called it "the trip of a lifetime on your dime."

Lucas was among five members of the House Committee on Science and Technology who went to the islands in June.

He says they learned about climate change, ocean acidification, El Nino, maritime reserves protection and research funded by the National Science Foundation.

Lucas calls the trip a good use of resources to verify how U.S. taxpayer dollars are being spent.

Lucas took his wife on the trip and says he reimbursed the government for his wife's expenses.

An "Inside Edition" press release says the delegation took a military jet and stayed at an expensive island resort and were "treated like royalty."

A show producer and correspondent posed as tourists to report on the trip.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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