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John Kerry Blasts Trump Administration for Paris Move

by Kailani Koenig /  / Updated 

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WASHINGTON — Former Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday blasted President Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris climate accord and mocked the president’s claims about negotiating a different agreement.

“When Donald Trump says, well, we’re going to negotiate a better deal, you know, he’s going to go out and find a better deal? That’s like O.J. Simpson saying he’s going to go out and find the real killer,” Kerry said during an exclusive interview on NBC’s “Meet The Press.”

"Everybody knows he isn't going to do that because he doesn’t believe in it,” Kerry continued. “If he did believe in it, he wouldn’t have pulled out of Paris. America has unilaterally ceded global leadership on this issue, which for years, even Republican Presidents George H.W. Bush pushed in this direction.”

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On Thursday, President Trump announced his long-awaited decision to fulfill a campaign pledge and pull out of the Paris climate agreement, which was aimed at curbing emissions that contribute to climate change. The decision was a reversal of the Obama administration’s announcement last year that the U.S. would enter the agreement, and most of the rest of the world has also signed on.

Kerry invoked his successor as secretary of state, who also opposed the U.S. pulling out of the accord.

“I mean, what does Donald Trump know that Rex Tillerson, the former CEO of ExxonMobile, doesn’t know?” he asked.

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, also on Sunday’s "Meet The Press,” was one of the members of the administration to push President Trump to exit the agreement, and firmly defended the president’s decision Sunday morning, including repeating his assertion that other nations around the world applauded the U.S. previously signing on because “it put us at an economic disadvantage."

“Why did China and India not have to take any steps until 2030?” Pruitt asked. “Why did India condition their CO2 [carbon dioxide] reductions upon receiving $2.5 trillion of aid in the agreement? We were going to take steps, front loading our costs while the rest of the world waited to reduce their CO2 footprint. That’s the reason it put us at an economic disadvantage internationally.”

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