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Kerry Jokes in Commencement About How to Have an Impact on Gov’t: ‘Learn Russian’

Former Secretary of State John Kerry cracked a few jokes during his Harvard Kennedy School commencement address today, including a few at the expense of the Trump administration.

After making a brief reference to Alec Baldwin and Melissa McCarthy on SNL, Kerry said, “I’m often asked what the secret is… to having a real impact on government. Well, it’s recently changed. I used to say, either run for office or get a degree from the Harvard Kennedy School. With this White House I’d say: buy Rosetta Stone and learn Russian.”

“I did not come here to be partisan,” he continued. “Or political. Or pessimistic. But I need to tell the truth.”

Kerry went on to repeat a refrain that a lot of what’s happening is “not normal”:

“This is not a normal time. It’s not normal to see a President of the United States decrying ‘so-called judges.’ It’s not normal for the leader of the country that invented the First Amendment to routinely degrade and even threaten journalists. And no, it’s not normal to see the head of the FBI fired summarily because he was investigating connections between Russia and the presidential campaign of the very man who fired him. And it’s not normal that when you close your eyes and you listen to the news, too often the political back-and-forth in America sounds too much like it does in the kinds of countries that the State Department warns Americans not to travel to.”

Watch above (the relevant remarks start at the 10:40 mark), via Harvard Kennedy School.

[image via screengrab]

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