Pete Buttigieg, a Frequent Flier on Taxpayer-funded Private Jets

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg has taken at least 18 trips on private jets, funded by taxpayers, including a trip to Montreal, Canada, to receive an award. Politicians and bureaucrats indulge in this kind of waste all the time. Still, with Secretary Buttigieg, a former candidate for president, it merits a closer look. 

Buttigieg advocates more government action to curb carbon emissions. The Cessna 560XL Gulfstream IV jets favored by the Secretary contribute their fair share. This does not seem to trouble the Secretary, a former mayor of South Bend, Indiana. 

During a crippling supply-chain crisis, Buttigieg was off on a two-month “maternity leave,” a move he defended as work, “not a vacation.” Secretary Buttigieg proclaimed that “supply, demand and the pandemic” were the main forces behind the supply chain bottlenecks. 

According to the Secretary, “Americans have more money in their pockets compared to a year ago. Where they used to maybe spend it on going to shows or travel, they’ve been more likely to spend it on things, which is why actually we have a record number of goods coming through our ports.” 

That doubtless came as a surprise to embattled American workers. Secretary Buttigieg appears to believe their struggles are a good thing. 

In a House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing, Buttigieg proclaimed, “the more pain we are all experiencing from the high price of gas, ​the more benefit there is for those who can access electric vehicles.” The Secretary failed to chart the benefits for those who can’t access electric vehicles, which are still priced higher than gasoline-powered cars. 

For his part, Transportation Secretary Buttigieg can access a fleet of private jets funded by the taxes of American workers. If they thought that was a bad deal for taxpayers and typical ruling-class arrogance, it would be hard to blame them. 

K. Lloyd Billingsley is a Policy Fellow at the Independent Institute and a columnist at American Greatness.
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