President Obama's security vehicle, "The Beast," and other trucks in the president's motorcade have been fined for not paying London's $16 congestion charge, officials said today. According to the New York Post, the White House ignored the request for payment, which increased the fine. London mayor Boris Johnson allegedly told Obama himself about the fines, back in May, but Obama was a little busy being the leader of the free world and all, so he didn't get around to it, apparently. Johnson sounds pretty pleased with himself for showing Americans that everyone's subject to fines in his city:
"Our roads were not closed during the President's visit so his motorcade will pay, I'm delighted to say," Johnson said.
The American Embassy defended its refusal to pay the charge, insisting it was "wholly in accordance with the 1960 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations," obviously, which "prohibits the imposition of this sort of tax on diplomatic missions." In any case, since Johnson's so delighted about the charges, we dare him to step foot in a New York City park while craving a cigarette. Yeah, skip across the pond and try biking on the sidewalk. Or just hire a hooker. See who's delighted about what then.