Breaking tonight, John Kerry is facing further scrutiny, this time for financial disclosure forms obtained by Fox News that show he invested in oil companies prior to becoming President Biden’s climate envoy. Republicans are calling out the Bush administration’s embrace of the 16 19 projects, labeling it divisive nonsense and an attempt to rewrite history. Tonight’s supersized power panel debates. Plus, two of the richest people in the world engaging in a salacious Twitter war over NASA’s lunar lander contract, with word tonight that NASA has now suspended its contract offer until it can resolve to protests over the award.
Former NASA administrator Jim Reinstein joins us live. But we begin tonight with John Kerry back in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons. White House correspondent Kevin Corke has the latest tonight.
Now, the argument that Kerry may have lost some money on some energy sector investments prior to becoming the Bush administration’s climate envoy shouldn’t disabuse anyone of the notion that the investments themselves, by their very nature, may be seen as dubious by some, especially given his position and his possible influence and how that might shape U.S. energy policy. Kerry financial disclosure forms, which were obtained, as you pointed out by Fox News, show that the former secretary of state was financially invested in numerous oil companies including Duke Energy, Cimarex, Dominion Energy Energy, Exelon Corp.
and Valero Energy. Now, the financial forms show that Kerry’s total investments were valued somewhere between 4.2 and 15 million dollars, which he reported liquidating last month. Now, the State Department told Axios, which first reported about the financial disclosure at the climate czar, has divested from all assets that could pose conflicts of interest. Kerry has signed an ethics pledge stating he will not take part in decisions involving his former clients and employers. However, given the number of major corporations that have paid him hundreds of thousands of dollars and in some cases like Bank of America, millions of dollars over the past year, watchdog groups no doubt will be scouring the legislative fine print to make sure that none of his past benefactors directly benefit or indirectly benefit from US energy policies steered by Kerry.
Now, do keep this in mind. The disclosures come late in a week that also saw Kerry deny having ever discussed Israeli airstrikes in Syria with Iran’s foreign minister after the Times reported or suggested that he certainly had done that. And for the record, Kerry’s huge stock portfolio largely held in a trust affiliated with his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry. Of course, she’s the heiress to the Heinz food processing fortune. It’s just another one of those hiccups that happens early.
Christian, in an administration, sometimes you can weather the storm, but sometimes the hits just keep on coming.