In an appearance on Fox News, the reality star and former Olympian was being interviewed for the first time since announcing her intention to run for governor of the golden state, in the expected recall election.
“My friends are leaving California,” she told Sean Hannity. “My hangar, the guy right across, he was packing up his hangar and I said, where are you going? And he says, ‘I’m moving to Sedona, Arizona, I can’t take it here anymore. I can’t walk down the streets and see the homeless’.”
Ms Jenner added: “I don’t want to leave, okay? Either I stay and fight, or I get out of here.”
Although she touched on a number of contentious topics during the interview, including her controversial views on transgender girls participating in school sports, the tone-deaf comment quickly went viral.
Twitter users were mystified that in a state of 40 million people why Ms Jenner was so concerned about the narrow demographic of people who own private planes.
“What a heartbreaking story!” wrote Fred Wellman of the Lincoln Project. “Packing up his hangar and moving to Sedona! Who will think of those overlooked elites who have to be mildly inconvenienced by the poors!”
Democratic Congressman Ted Lieu, tweeted: “Dear @Caitlyn_Jenner California grew by 2.4 million people the last 10 years. Also, unlike you, Dems are focused on the 99% of people who don’t own planes or hangars. And you know what’s going to help reduce homelessness? The #AmericanRescuePlan, which your party opposed.”
Opinion writer Paul Waldman sarcastically observed: “Clearly she’s a natural politician with razor-keen instincts for how to relate to the common folk.”
Ms Jenner was described on Twitter as a “cartoon villain” and “at least different kinds of ridiculous” for the remark, as well as other comments made during the interview.
“This is amazing. Beyond parody,” writer David Atkins tweeted. “Oh no, the people with private jets have to see the homeless, and just can’t stay in the state.”
He added: “I dunno Caitlyn: maybe you could pay some taxes, change the zoning rules and house the homeless instead of stepping over them on the way to your jet.”
Actor Bradley Whitford tweeted: “Exactly, Caitlyn. Private jet owners are the victims. Because they are subjected to the specter of homelessness through the tinted windows of their limousines. You’re a great humanitarian.”
Fellow actor Patricia Arquette posted a reminder that former President Donald Trump’s tax bailout for the rich, which “ballooned the deficit”, included deductions for private planes.
TV host Heather Gardner tweeted that the plight of the owners of private planes, faced with the poverty of others, is “Not quite the sales pitch she thinks it is…”
Political analyst Bill Scher noted that people leaving California for places such as Arizona were the reason those states had turned Democratic or were trending way in recent elections.
Comedian Kathy Griffin wryly tweeted: “When you lost the private airplane hangar crowd…”