Courier, Houma, Louisiana, on Rep. Joe Harrison
Courier, Houma, Louisiana, on Rep. Joe Harrison:
State Rep. Joe Harrison’s gas receipts say he spends much of his time behind the wheel.
In fact, the gas receipts he turned in to the state House of Representatives amounted to $24,900. He was reimbursed that amount for the official travel he said he did between 2010 and 2013.
Harrison also submitted $25,700 in gas expenses to his campaign, which paid out that amount in the same time period.
Those numbers were put together in a recent article by Nola.com, the Times-Picayune and Fox 8.
The report also detailed what kind of driving Harrison would have to do to compile that kind of official mileage.
According to the report, “Even traveling a loop to the district’s farthest localities — from Harrison’s office in Gray to Dulac, Morgan City, Labadieville and back to Gray — would total 123 miles. Harrison would have to make that loop 406 times in a year to reach the miles he said he drives.”
That would be an incredible feat — driving more than 123 miles each and every day for three straight years.
Harrison’s constituents can wonder what kind of official travel would require him to spend so much time in his car.
But they can do little more than wonder.
Harrison has been uninterested in telling his side of the story.
Harrison has said he was ambushed by the journalists who worked on the original story, but they say they offered him numerous chances to give an explanation. He maintains he has done nothing wrong.
That might well be.
And if it is so, he should tell his story — as he promised to do following the original story.
He should help everyone in his district and beyond understand what legitimate reason there was to charge taxpayers and his campaign for about 50,000 miles of official driving per year.