FIRST ON FOX: House Republican leaders are planning sweeping investigations into the operations of Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry’s office.
GOP leaders of key committees with oversight powers told Fox News Digital that they were prepared to pursue investigations into Kerry once Republicans assume majority control of the House. Republicans have previously expressed concern regarding Kerry’s apparent efforts to hide information from oversight and his office’s consultations with far-left environmental groups.
“Next Congress, we will continue our investigation into the scope of Secretary Kerry’s role in the Biden Administration, his coordination with radical environmental groups, and any deals he has cut with foreign governments despite not being confirmed by the Senate,” Rep. James Comer, R-Ky., the top GOP member of the Oversight and Reform Committee, told Fox News Digital.
“The lack of transparency from Secretary Kerry is troubling and raises concerns about the motives behind hiding this information from Congress and the American people,” he continued. “We’ve called on Secretary Kerry to preserve all documents and communications related to these issues and will continue to press for information.”
In October, Comer and Oversight Subcommittee on Environment Ranking Member Yvette Herrell, R-N.M., penned a letter to Kerry, requesting information about his office’s communications with outside parties. The two Republican lawmakers also criticized Kerry for his office’s lack of transparency and unresponsiveness to previous requests for information.
“At a time when Americans are paying more for energy and gas, we owe them answers and transparency about this secretive position,” Comer told Fox News Digital on Wednesday.
Shortly after taking office in January 2021, President Biden appointed Kerry to be the State Department’s first-ever special presidential envoy for climate. The role gives Kerry a seat on Biden’s Cabinet and National Security Council, but didn’t require a Senate confirmation process.
Since the appointment, Kerry has traveled worldwide, attending high-profile climate summits and diplomatic engagements in an effort to push a global transition from fossil fuels to green energy alternatives.
In addition to the House Oversight Republicans, Foreign Affairs Committee ranking member Michael McCaul, R-Texas has also warned about Kerry’s lack of transparency and actions. The Texas lawmaker wrote a letter signed also by the other GOP members of the committee to Kerry on Sept. 30, demanding answers from the climate envoy related to his office’s efforts to promote a green agenda.
“Next Congress, the House Foreign Affairs Committee will hold John Kerry and the State Department accountable for their radical climate agenda and questionable ethics,” McCaul told Fox News Digital on Wednesday.
“We will conduct rigorous oversight of the Biden/Kerry agenda for putting taxpayers on the hook for ‘loss and damage’ payments, turning a blind eye towards slave labor in green energy supply chains, and unlawful conduct,” he added.
Both letters from Comer and McCaul earlier this fall cited multiple Fox News Digital reports that uncovered significant coordination between Kerry office and environmental groups. The reports showed that non-governmental organizations which advocate for an aggressive green transition have consulted with and sometimes acted as an apparent go-between on international negotiations for Kerry’s office.
Fox News Digital also reported that Kerry’s office, which has been notably tight-lipped about its staffing and operations, routinely redacts the names of officials who work at the office in information requests. And, on at least one occasion, the office discussed keeping its plans off “paper” in an apparent effort to avoid public scrutiny.
While the State Department has failed to disclose who works at the taxpayer-funded office, a Fox News Digital review of public career websites in August revealed it is rife with individuals who formerly worked in high-ranking positions at environmental organizations. Many of the same groups have worked with Kerry to formulate key policies during his tenure.
“We need to know the extent to which Special Envoy John Kerry is farming his work out to progressive environmentalists, which could be a violation of federal law,” McCaul told Fox News Digital in September.
And Comer said in October that it is of “critical importance” that the Oversight Committee conducts oversight over Kerry’s position and the extent to which he is “partnering with radical, left-wing environmental groups to push Green New Deal policies at the expense of the American people.”
Kerry’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.