The Washington Times - July 11, 2013, 07:22PM

A top U.S. senator is calling on the Education Department to call off a conference and bus trip in light of Obama administration claims that other student programs face cuts.

“At a time when the administration is making the dubious claim that 1,172,000 students ‘will lose access to support programs and special education,’ the department should not be diverting resources to lavish conferences,” Sen. Tom Coburn, Oklahoma Republican, wrote in a letter to Education Secretary Arne Duncan.

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The conference for financial aid professionals is scheduled for December at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nev.

Mr. Coburn also called on Mr. Duncan to reconsider a planned bus tour later this year across California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas: “Education dollars belong in the classroom and should not be wasted on campaign-style bus tours and junkets,” he wrote.

The Education Department could not be reached Thursday evening for comment.