White House Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, who constantly advocates for the need to reduce carbon emissions, has been called out for climate hypocrisy after his excessive use of taxpayer-funded private jets was revealed.
Buttigieg was roasted by the hosts of Fox News Channel’s “Outnumbered,” where the panel members called him out for being a hypocrite.
Fox Business host Kennedy began the segment by reading a quote the transportation secretary in which Buttigieg expressed his love for flying in an apparent attempt to downplay his hypocritical use of airplanes.
“Planes are always the most magical, ever since I was a little kid… There’s nothing more remarkable than human beings being able to fly, so I’ve got a soft spot for it when it comes to my personal travel… Bicycle’s a pretty strong runner-up,” he reportedly told Condé Nast.
The transportation secretary has reportedly taken at least 18 private jet flights since taking office, while at the same time advocating for Americans to reduce their carbon emissions.
An investigation by @apublictrust found that Biden's Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg has more than doubled the number of taxpayer-funded private jet flights taken by his predecessor, all while lecturing Americans about the need to go "green."https://t.co/EgIIfxcY1s
— Spencer Brown (@itsSpencerBrown) December 12, 2022
“Shouldn’t anyone who espouses that hyper-moralism in terms of environmentalism, shouldn’t they be the ones who have to live the most stringent lives in terms of keeping themselves from enjoying luxuries like private plane travel?” Kennedy asked the panel.
“Walk the walk, man… It is ridiculous to me that our tax dollars are funding for someone to travel internationally to Canada to pick up an award for advancing LGBTQ rights,” co-host Emily Compagno replied.
“Why then wouldn’t you, in your symbolism of advancement, take a commercial airline?” she asked. “I do.”
Compagno then took aim at Buttigieg’s “holier-than-thou” attitude, stating: “That’s what I can’t take. I would love for my tax dollars to stop paying for their hypocrisy.”
“I think he should have to ride his bicycle all across the country,” Kennedy jokingly responded.
Rob Smith, president of the Douglass Society, noted that Buttigieg’s hypocritical behavior follows a pattern for political figures — citing the actions of Democrat figures like Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D).
He then argued that, while the behavior isn’t new, Buttigieg’s actions may be a part of a larger strategy — his presidential aspirations — noting that most of the transportation secretary’s flights are to key primary states such as Florida, Ohio, and New Hampshire.
“This is stuff that we see from the elites. You saw it with Nancy Pelosi’s blowout during the lockdown, as we saw with Gavin Newsom’s policies, like a $50,000 dinner,” Smith explained. “But when it comes to Buttigieg, you have to be clear and understand one thing: Buttigieg wants nothing more than to be America’s first gay president.”
Another panel member, Morgan Ortagus — who served as a spokesperson for the State Department under former President Donald Trump — asserted that the Department of Transportation’s Office of Inspector General should investigate Buttigieg’s actions.
“It is raising red flags that he’s going to early primary states,” she said, arguing that when Republicans regain control of the House in January, there’s no reason that an investigation should not take place.
This isn’t the first time a government official was called out for similar behavior. Former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price was forced to resign after it was revealed that his flights had cost taxpayers more than $1 million.