Secret Service spokesman Edwin Donovan told Media Matters that figures in recent reports of President Obama's trip to India were "significantly exaggerated." Donovan added that due to security concerns the Secret Service does not comment on the costs, personnel, or equipment involved in presidential trips.
Media Matters reported yesterday that claims that Obama's upcoming trip would cost $200 million per day were called "wildly inflated" by White House spokesman Matt Lehrich, who said the figure had "no basis in reality."
Factcheck.org has since called the figure "highly doubtful," pointing out that the entire cost of operations in Afghanistan adds up to "roughly $190 million per day." CBS.com reported today that while "[t]he story lacked a named source," the $200 million claim "quickly gained traction on the right." CBS.com further reported that that a 10-day trip to Africa by President Clinton was estimated to have cost a total of $42 million, plus the cost of planes, helicopters, and personnel.