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. Paul

    This guy is SOOOOO tone deaf!

    July 6, 2013 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  2. Spion

    Lies come so easy to the privileged class of the Obama administration, even when the truth is easier to deal with in the long run.

    July 6, 2013 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  3. Norm

    Was this yacht on the moon? Last time I looked Nantucket has access to phone service and the Internet. So, my question is: Who cares?

    July 6, 2013 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  4. Isla

    But why would they lie about it? That is troubling.

    July 6, 2013 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  5. Pinewalker

    I have no issue with him being on his boat during the crisis.....I do have an issue that his boat is in MA 99% of the time and he claims its somewhere else so he can avoid paying MA tax on it.

    July 6, 2013 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  6. gman

    Liberal elitist

    July 6, 2013 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  7. Jacko

    Here's the headline that was on CNN.com; guess it really is about him being on his yacht:

    Kerry on yacht as Egypt crisis unfolded

    More media stuff trying to create news! Really important stuff. BTW: can anyone really do anything about Egypt, Dem or Repub???

    July 6, 2013 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  8. ron

    I have no problem with Kerry being on a boat while the events take place in Egypt. What do we believe that Kerry will actually do in regards to Egypt? I doubt that many of the individuals on the street could care what any American has to say. Could we influence the military, maybe, but for that we should put their debit account on restriction.

    July 6, 2013 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  9. CO22

    This story belongs in the Enquirer. He does have a laptop and cell phone with him. No need to be making up stuff to get people alarmed.

    July 6, 2013 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  10. pete gibson

    Two points here. One is service-if you're a civil servant, especially in an important position like this, then sometime you have to sacrifice and miss out on holidays to take care of your duties. If you aren't willing to do that then get out and let someone else who cares do the job. Two is-why do they find it so easy to blatantly lie. bengazi should have taught them about that but here they go again with lies.

    July 6, 2013 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  11. TomNPitt

    Kind of like when George the First spent the First Iraq War rolling around on his 28 ft Cigarette in Kinnebunkport. It's the one place you can count on not having any leaks – except when CBS reporters stop being reporters and start acting like Paparazzi. When there's no logic t what's going on somewhere, how can you do anything ele but go boating. Where was Bonner?? And Where"s the jobs Bonner??

    July 6, 2013 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  12. jason

    I find it ammusing that all these leftists are defending a guy on his 75 foot yacht... Seems he is getting the better end of the deal lolol

    July 6, 2013 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  13. jb61264

    Obvious that there are a bunch of liberals running to the aide of one of their beloved politicians...the point is not whether he is on a boat for the holiday or not, the point is that his administration is trying to cover it up and if you all don't have any issue with that, then you are a bunch of hypocrites...oh wait, you're liberals...that's what being a liberal is about...sorry, my bad.

    July 6, 2013 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  14. Greg

    It's better than flying to Vegas to fund raise while Americans are being killed by a bunch of radicals. The real story here is this administration supported the Brotherhood and it was as a bad bet. Overseeing the installation of a new regime can't be done over a weekend which is exactly what happened last time and now look at the mess.

    July 6, 2013 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  15. Bryan

    Do the people defending this clown like being lied to?

    I don't begrudge the man for playing with the yacht his wife bought him . There is no nicer place on the 4th July than an exclusive yacht club .

    But why LIE about it? Don't we the common folk deserve an honest government ?

    July 6, 2013 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  16. GTK

    Why shouldn't he relax on a holiday like the rest of us? When one accepts an appointment of the importance that he has – one needs to understand that certain sacrifices need to be made because of their job. Everyone in the world knew what could occur in Egypt and i would have to ask why wouldn't you delay your time off until the crisis had passed. It is a common theme among democrats and republicans in government – they are out of touch with reality. How many among us have to work thru the holidays. It is deeply disappointing that we have a government so out of touch with hard work and sacrifice. For a country at war still – our government elites of both parties make it seem like a day at the beach. We should demand more of these people and let them know at the ballot box – we are mad as hell and wont take it anymore. Kerry's lack of urgency over the situation shows someone that should not be in the position. This is both a democrat and republican problem – he like many of colleagues have been in washington too long – they need to be encouraged to get out government. There are far more capable and deserving people who should be in these positions. Just another sign of government nepotism at its finest for our democratic government by the people and for the people.

    July 6, 2013 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  17. Raymond Weil

    I agree with those that say that it doesn't matter that Kerry was on his yacht when this went down. I AM concerned that it appears endemic to this administration to lie first when it appears that an action or word may reflect negatively on them.

    July 6, 2013 09:27 am at 9:27 am |
  18. jim

    Wow, the defenders of disinterested incompetence are out in force today.

    Accountability, like taxes, are for the little people.

    July 6, 2013 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  19. MommaMari

    I don't care that Kerry was on his boat. I am very concerned that a State Dept official chose to lie about it. Another sign of the lack of honesty and integrity in politics. We have to wonder about what else they are lying? Our citizens are becoming desensitized to the lies and moral decline of our leaders. We are reaping what we have sown.

    July 6, 2013 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  20. paukenplayer

    Who cares if he's on his boat. Just don't lie about it. The "so what" is that his team either (a) didn't know where he was (completely unacceptable for that position) or (b) lied about it (completely unacceptable but we seem to be getting numb to that, sadly). I don't have a problem if he's wealthy; owns a boat, etc. This is not a political issue; it's possibly a moral one.

    July 6, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  21. BJ

    I don't care he was on his yacht but AGAIN another lie from the administration.

    July 6, 2013 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  22. TFT

    This is a "let them eat cake" admistration. They ought to all be hauled into L'Enfant Plaza and guillotined en masse.

    July 6, 2013 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  23. jacksays

    in this day of mobile communications the fact that he wasn't sitting in his office doesn't mean he didn't know what was going on. but as stated above, so what? was he supposed to drop everything and speed to the midst of another country's crisis? i know that's something the US usually does but maybe, just maybe, we were (for a split second) smarter than that for once.

    as for someone lying about it... the spokesman prob asked some low-level staffer who had no idea where their boss was since he's been all over the place in prior weeks and just ran with whatever answer they gave.

    of course, that's far less nefarious sounding, isn't it...

    July 6, 2013 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  24. tjh39

    It is not the fact that he was on the boat it is the fact that he is a damn liar and always has been.

    July 6, 2013 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  25. Socalmcgraw

    Why do staffers do stuff like that. Just say where he is and that he is in full communications and is working. These men and women do not get a day off. They travel with a team and are never out of touch. Slow new day I guess.

    July 6, 2013 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
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