Congress Is Taking More Uber Rides than a Drunken Undergrad with a Tax Rebate

So far this year, members have taken 2,800 Uber rides compared to just 1,800 taxi rides.

Nov 11 2014, 4:45pm

Image: Uber Facebook page

Members of Congress, specifically their campaign teams, are using Uber more than taxis for cheaper rides, according to an analysis from consulting firm Hamilton Place Strategies.

HPS pulled data from Federal Election Committee and found members of Congress took about 2,800 Uber rides for less than $100 so far in 2014, compared to just 1,800 taxi rides. That's a huge increase compared to 2012, when Uber was in its infancy: Congress only took about 100 Uber rides under $100 and about 2,800 low-cost taxi rides.

Image:  Hamilton Place Strategies

It's a notable shift, considering Uber—along with Lyft, Airbnb and other so-called "peer-to-peer" businesses—are lobbying Congress and other levels of government to ease up regulations and allow their business model to thrive. Meanwhile, groups that represent more traditional businesses (like the New York Taxi Workers' Alliance) are trying to get the government to put a leash on the competition.

As HPS puts it: "These dynamics have big implications for how regulators navigate the peer-to-peer economy. The nature of oversight changes when someone is both regulator and consumer." 

Lobbyists can't compete with the allure of Steven, a driver who is just 0.7 miles away.