Congress spent $4.5 million dollars on an 85-foot speed boat that only makes one run a year -- and that's just to keep its engine in running order.
The Seattle Times reports that a U.S. Senator and two Representatives slipped the money for the boat into a defense spending bill for the Navy.
Problem is, the Navy never wanted the boat.
So they gave it to the University of Washington.
Which, it turned out, didn't want it either.
Who really wanted it?
Try Guardian Marine International -- a shipbuilder.
Turns out, Guardian had contributed $16,750 to Congressman Norm Dicks (D-WA), $14,277 to Congressman Brian Baird (D-WA), and $15,000 to Senator Patty Murray (D-WA).
And the three included earmarks in defense bills sending Guardian $17.65 million in government contracts for boats the Navy and Coast Guard never asked for and never wanted. (Seattle Times)