In a high-stakes exchange fueled by sharp words and sharper criticisms, U.S. President Joe Biden’s appointed climate czar, John Kerry, vehemently denounced an insinuation about his private travel habits from Florida Representative Cory Mills during Thursday’s House subcommittee hearing. The pointed jibe ignited a heated debate on travel protocols, unearthing controversial allegations about Kerry’s alleged preferential mode of transportation – private jet – an impressively indulgent irony given his current position as an arbiter of global climate action.
John Kerry: "We don't own a private jet. I don't own a private jet. I've personally have never owned a private jet. And, obviously, it's pretty stupid to talk about coming in a private jet from the State Department up here. Honestly, if that's where you want to go, go there!" pic.twitter.com/yEOmMsfoKK
— CSPAN (@cspan) July 13, 2023
The crossfire occurred as Mills started his query concerning Chinese solar panels, opening with a remark drenched in apparent sarcasm, “I hope it wasn’t too problematic for your operational team and your private jet to get here.” Such comments touch a raw nerve within climate crusaders like Kerry, as private jet travel, with its gargantuan carbon footprint, contradicts the very foundations of their campaign against global warming.
Far from being silenced, Kerry responded with a fiery rebuttal against Mills’ insinuation. “I just don’t agree with your facts,” he declared, addressing what he considers, “one of the most outrageously persistent lies” about his alleged private jet ownership. The climate czar proclaimed, “We don’t own a private jet. I don’t own a private jet. I personally have never owned a private jet.”
Despite his forceful defense, Kerry was again confronted with a stern follow-up from Representative Michael Waltz who further probed into Kerry’s testimony. Waltz presented a Fox News report from February stating Kerry’s family had sold their private jet to a New York hedge fund amid criticism of its numerous journeys and the consequent significant carbon emissions since Biden’s administration took office.
To this, there was a subtle shift in Kerry’s defense. He acknowledged that his wife, Teresa Heinz, a Heinz ketchup fortune heiress, did indeed “own a plane.” Yet, he insisted on usually utilizing commercial flights, with the occasional military or, quite possibly, private one.
REP. WALTZ: "You just testified under oath that you never owned a private jet…"
CLIMATE ENVOY JOHN KERRY: "My wife owned a plane. […] I do not fly on a private jet. I fly commercially…"
REP. WALTZ: "Have you flown a private jet in a personal or official capacity since… pic.twitter.com/4aIzab8Yev
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) July 13, 2023
In conclusion, Thursday’s House subcommittee hearing manifests the critical scrutiny facing world leaders, emphasizing the primacy of actions over rhetoric in the grand theatre of climate change. In the unfolding battle against global warming, it is every leader’s responsibility to set an example, to be the change they want to see. This episode serves as a stark reminder that sustainability panders to no one’s prestige or privilege. It is a universal commitment that knows no exceptions, not even for John Kerry. The truth, as always, lies in the transparency and accountability of our leaders.