President Joe Biden caused a massive traffic backup on the Capital Beltway, leaving hundreds of stagnant drivers, including some of his supporters, fuming for over an hour Tuesday.
Biden was headed for a fundraiser in Chevy Chase, Maryland, and so sections of I-495 were cordoned off in order to make way for the presidential motorcade as Biden proceeded to two campaign receptions in the area.
The lane closures, which came during the evening rush hour, wreaked havoc on commuters. Traffic became stagnant for hours in the areas affected by the road closure, which “caused more than five miles of backups” during the time the lane shutdowns were in effect. In one particularly striking image of the backup, Montgomery County Council President Evan Glass tweeted a picture of himself standing outside of his vehicle in the midst of standstill traffic.
“I knew I should have taken the bus,” Glass quipped.
The Beltway comes to a complete stop for the presidential motorcade. I knew I should have taken the bus! pic.twitter.com/RS01hYdfM5— Evan Glass (@EvanMGlass) June 27, 2023
Meanwhile, even some of Biden’s most loyal supporters took issue with his shutdown of the Beltway in order to facilitate his fundraising efforts. The New York Post reported that a number of Washington Post readers expressed frustration with Biden in the comments section. One commenter declared that “this has single-handedly cost my capital D Democrat vote for you Sleepy Uncle Joe” while another self-described “big Biden supporter” called the closure “an unnecessary and boneheaded move.” Yet another proposed that the president had chosen a less direct route than he could have, suggesting that Biden did so “because he thinks he’s a king.”
Commuter frustration aside, the environmental impact of such a backup is also a serious concern to those fretting about the release of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the air, particularly considering the Biden Administration’s aggressive stance on climate change.
To calculate a rough estimate of just how much CO2 Biden’s traffic jam might have unleashed into the environment, the Media Research Center reached out to environmental and public health consultant Steve Milloy, founder and publisher of JunkScience.com.
An idling car burns half a gallon of gasoline per hour, which produces ten pounds of carbon dioxide, Milloy explained. Hypothetically, Milloy calculated, if 1,000 cars had idled for an hour, they would have produced roughly five tons of carbon dioxide - the average amount of CO2 emitted by a single car in an entire year.
Considering that roughly 225,000 cars use the Capital Beltway each workday, the total amount of carbon dioxide produced by the Biden-induced traffic entanglement is likely much higher.