Posted: 2:25 pm on 2nd July 2013

Some will remember that in 2011 when Kevin Rudd was foreign minister (between his first and second stints as Prime Minister), he managed to spend more than $1 million in expenses travelling on 14 trips in the 12 months up to August 2011.

Then Prime Minister Gillard even questioned Mr Rudd following reports of international trips costing up to $80,000 each.

Well, it seems our new Prime Minister’s  phone bill of $29,676 for six months of calls shows that he has been busy while he has been on the backbench.  He has also been travelling the world on the taxpayer dollar:

Mr Rudd, whose globetrotting habits earned him the tag ‘Kevin 747’, also spent $27,000 on a ‘study’ tour to Switzerland, Canada and the US in July 2012. The then backbencher was also able to use his ‘celebrity’ status to organise meetings with United Nations’ Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon and other world leaders.

But Mr Rudd is not the only politician out there wasting your tax dollars burning up the wires.

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott also rung up a hefty phone bill – of $33,523 – for the six months to 31 December 2012, as federal MPs spent more than $5 million on travel and office expenses.

It turns out the former backbencher turned Prime Minister has the third highest phone bill of all 226 federal MPs, trailing only retiring rural Liberal MP Barry Haase and Opposition Leader Mr Abbott. By comparison Julia Gillard’s prime ministerial expenses totalled a humble $2,961 for the same six month period.

So while some MPs seem to be mindful of the fact they are spending the Australian public’s money, others are carrying on like teenagers on a shopping spree with their father’s credit card.

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