July 5th, 2013
01:15 PM ET
9 years ago

State Department admits Kerry was on yacht day of Egypt coup

(CNN) - After the emergence of photographs showing Secretary of State John Kerry on his 76-foot yacht “Isabel” on Nantucket Sound on Thursday, the State Department issued an embarrassing correction Friday morning, back-tracking and acknowledging that the Secretary was in fact on the yacht on Wednesday, the day the Egyptian military staged a coup against democratically-elected Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy.

Originally, State Department officials were quick to deny a Wednesday tweet from CBS News’ Mosheh Oinounou that: “A @CBSThisMorning producer just spotted Secretary of State Kerry on yacht in the Nantucket Boat Basin. No response when she shouted ‘Morsi.’”

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki issued a statement Wednesday saying “any report or tweet that he was on a boat is completely inaccurate.”

“Since his plane touched down in Washington at 4 am, Secretary Kerry was working all day and on the phone dealing with the crisis in Egypt,” Psaki said. “He participated in the White House meeting with the President by secure phone and was and is in non-stop contact with foreign leaders, and his senior team in Washington and Cairo.”

But overnight, photographs emerged showing Kerry on “Isabel” and taking in some kayaking on Thursday.

The New York Daily News just published some of them.

On Friday morning, Psaki issued a second statement, acknowledging that Kerry was “briefly on his boat on Wednesday.”

Kerry again swamped by nautical controversy

She went on to say that “Secretary Kerry worked around the clock all day including participating in the President’s meeting with his national security council, and calls with Norwegian Foreign Minister Eade, Qatari Foreign Minister al-Attiyah, Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu, Egyptian Constitution Party President ElBaradei and five calls Ambassador Patterson on that day alone and since then he continued to make calls to leaders including Emirati Foreign Minister bin Zayed, Prime Minister Netanyahu and Egyptian Foreign Minister Amr.”

An administration official added that none of those calls happened while Kerry was on his boat.

Filed under: Egypt • John Kerry • State Department
soundoff (707 Responses)
  1. Michele

    Who cares where he was? As a vet, this is holiday just as much as anyone's. Why shouldn't he be on his yacht enjoying time with family and friends? Just because some people somewhere else are doing something significant? There's always something happening somewhere. How would things be any different if he'd been in some office in DC, MA, or anywhere else? And besides, do you think he didn't have his smart phone, his laptop, people all around him keeping tabs on what was happening everywhere? He's got a 24/7/365 job, and it travels with him electronically. It is not location dependent. Get a grip.

    July 5, 2013 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  2. JT

    Why would the administration lie about this? Nobody is suggesting he cant go out on his boat. The issue is them lying about it. And Steveo, if the Bush administration lied about him being on his ranch, are you suggesting that somehow makes it OK for them to lie about Kerry? Not sure I see the logic there.

    July 5, 2013 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  3. mypitts2

    My wife said, "He's not Hillary." So true. She definitely wouldn't have been on any yet while this was unfolding.

    July 5, 2013 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  4. John

    There's nothing wrong about Kerry being on his yacht while Egypt went up in flames. Anybody else know the future? Didn't think so. I just find it funny that those who tell us to hate the 1%ers don't bother to point out that Kerry's yacht is 76 feet long! That's longer than MY HOUSE! I wonder where he gets the money to pay for something like that. Certainly not from his salary. Who owns him?

    July 5, 2013 10:35 pm at 10:35 pm |
  5. Andy

    This is impossible. Only evil rich 1 percenter republicans can afford a $7 million dollar yacht and then dodge a half a million in taxes by docking it out of state, right?

    July 5, 2013 10:35 pm at 10:35 pm |
  6. yosemite sam

    Just proves what liars they are. What else have they lied about?

    July 5, 2013 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  7. Reality

    Glad John Kerry has enough money to sail around on his Yacht, while many American suffer from long hours of work and lower salaries. This is coming from an individual with a Ph.D. in Chemistry. Let's keep giving billions to Africa, China and the rest of the world. You wouldn't see me crying if your Yacht sinks or gets overturned by a wave.

    July 5, 2013 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  8. Clay

    It's not the fact that Kerry is on his yacht or vacationing – we all deserve some rest. But this is another flat out LIE that this administration was caught in, and the main stream Obama-worshiping media is more than happy to go along with and cover Obama's rear end. This is pathetic behavior by the American media.

    July 5, 2013 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm |
  9. Leah K.


    July 5, 2013 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm |
  10. jeff

    funny how the liberal demorats protect their own 1% er's.

    July 5, 2013 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  11. tyrajam

    It is beyond belief the way these people brazenly lie. Who cares if he was on the boat? He can still work and call in on a secure line, so why lie about it? And then double down again and officially state he was not on the yacht. Then pics come out of him there, so they must do a 180 and admit they straight out knowingly lied? I don't think I have ever seen this kind of arrogance.

    July 5, 2013 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  12. AMom

    Big deal. Kerry on yacht when Egypt coup unfolded. Bigger deal: Obama in bed when Benghazi embassy burned.

    July 5, 2013 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  13. jeff

    wonder how many union workers were on their 76 ft yacht's this 4th? or how many minorities were having a few shrimp on the fantail..yet you foolish people protect this democrat of a clown, and bash others from the other parties for doing the same??

    July 5, 2013 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  14. reocnmarine

    How clueless can DEMOCRATS be? You don't start partying in the middle of a coup in Egypt anymore than you go to bed during an attack on your Consulate in Benghazi.

    July 5, 2013 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  15. Jimh77

    Who cares where Kerry was? The dude is allowed to have some down time. These Old Geezerds on the Republican party are in need of replacement. ALL OF THEM. Calling Hillary old, wait one minute, how old are they?
    I rest my case.

    July 5, 2013 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  16. Truthteller

    No one cares where he was (not even Obama apparently)...today's technology makes "being there" mean more than in the same room. However, we do care that the first instinct of the State Department seems to be to lie and only tell the truth when forced to do so. Why can't our leaders realize we can forgive much, but not lying.

    July 5, 2013 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  17. GGinBham

    This is only a story because the Administration made it one. No one cared that he was on a boat except the image-conscious officials who decided to lie about his whereabouts. It begs the question: If they feel the need to lie about something so trivial, what other, more important things do they lie about?

    July 5, 2013 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  18. Seyedibar

    Cool. Kerry has a yacht. Something happened in a Muslim country. He does business by phone. Not sure where the plot in this story lies.

    July 5, 2013 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  19. bassman

    Sarah Palin via Facebook: The State Department categorically denied Kerry was on his boat. Yet CBS had pictures to prove it.

    July 5, 2013 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  20. don keller

    so the guy is rich... and why are republicans complaining ? The photo ops of bush the elder on his cigarette boat the day of the invasion Iraq didn't bother republicans .

    July 5, 2013 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  21. katinki01

    A lot of people seem to be missing the issue... the problem isn't that he was on his yacht enjoying a day of vacation – everyone gets a day off from time to time. It's that his department lied about it.

    July 5, 2013 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
  22. katinki01

    I think some people seem to be missing the issue here. The problem isn't that he was enjoying a vacation day on his yacht – everyone gets a day off every now and then. The issue is that his department lied about it.

    July 5, 2013 11:00 pm at 11:00 pm |
  23. bill davis

    Reminds me of the BP Guy, off to the races, but it was a swift boat.

    BP guy is gone, wish Kerry could find a real job.

    July 5, 2013 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  24. carabidae

    If we are going to send a country billions of dollars, the secretary of state damn well better be dealing with our investment and not out yachting. With great power comes great responsibility.

    July 5, 2013 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  25. Peter Q Wolfe

    This seems to me like a reimaging issue just a preprogrammed response to general enquiries to Mr Kerry's where abouts. I don't see anything wrong with him on his boat on a national holiday break.

    July 5, 2013 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
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