Biden's Going to Europe to Pursue a Climate Deal and Taking Half the Cabinet with Him

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Posted: Oct 27, 2021 9:45 AM
Biden's Going to Europe to Pursue a Climate Deal and Taking Half the Cabinet with Him

Source: AP Photo/Susan Walsh

When President Biden heads to Europe on Thursday for a series of meetings with G20 allies and other world leaders to supposedly work out a new international compact to address climate change, he won't be going alone. 

In addition to First Lady Jill Biden, the president is also bringing roughly half of his cabinet across the pond to Glasgow, Scotland to negotiate on climate issues in their quixotic campaign to save the world. 

While it might be reasonable to bring John Kerry — Biden's special climate envoy — and Gina McCarthy — the White House climate advisor — the additional smattering of cabinet secretaries would surely be better off focusing on domestic issues as crises under their purview continue to spiral out of control. 

Also joining Joe Biden on his climate policy junket:

  • Secretary of State Antony Blinken
  • Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg
  • Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm
  • EPA Administrator Michael Regan
  • Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack
  • Interior Secretary Deb Haaland
  • Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen
  • USAID Administrator Samantha Power
  • NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad
  • White House Office of Science and Technology Policy Director Eric Lander
  • National Economic Council Director Brian Deese

Perhaps Buttigieg should stay on this continent while the supply chain crisis threatens to cause greater inflation and short American consumers of items like pumpkins, Christmas trees, and holiday gifts? Maybe it would be a good idea for Yellen to keep tabs on the American economy from... America while inflation rages and Americans face the most expensive Thanksgiving ever? With gas above $3 per gallon averages in all 50 states and energy prices continuing to rise, it wouldn't be a terrible idea to keep Granholm close to home and focused on keeping Americans' lights on and gas tanks full? And, just on title alone, shouldn't an Interior Secretary remain... in the United States?

The message being sent by President Biden and his top advisors is that they don't view the problems everyday Americans currently face as pressing or deserving of their efforts. No, instead of inflation, supply chain, or energy crises, the Biden administration is focused on signing a mostly meaningless piece of paper to signal their virtue. If anything concrete does come of the climate summit in Glasgow, it'll just mean more Green New Deal-style policies that will yield even more hardship for Americans.

Democrats, especially those in Congress, ought to be unhappy with the trip abroad as well. Biden campaigned on and continually promises to deliver on his "Build Back Better" agenda, but his status as "closer" hasn't gotten Congress any closer to passing either of his domestic agenda priorities. 

Even without a deal struck that will keep his own party in line — let alone swing support from Republicans — Biden is skipping town and taking half his cabinet with him. This sends the message to Pelosi, Schumer, and their disparate Democrat caucuses that their months of infighting, missed deadlines, and gutted proposals weren't enough to make Biden stick around to see them across the finish line.

All that aside, there's also the issue of hypocrisy that comes along with flying Joe Biden and a dozen senior administration officials plus their staffs and security details to Europe. 

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My colleagues at RedState put it well: "Joe Biden will demonstrate his determination to fight climate change by flying more than a dozen Cabinet members across the Atlantic next week — in several passenger jets consuming tons of fossil fuels at high altitudes." Then there's the motorcades full of SUVs in which they'll traipse around Europe, the hotel linens that'll need to be washed, the lights that will be turned on, and every other thing the Biden administration demonizes Americans for wanting to do.

Senator John Thune (R-SD) on Tuesday called out President Biden and his administration's out of touch decision to leave the country, noting "everyday Americans don't care about Glasgow, they care about gas prices."

"It would be a mistake to try and drag the United States into a new economy-killing climate deal," Thune added.


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