Oddly enough, some Republicans think climate change is real

Comic by Newsworks.

Members of the GOP are notorious for their stance against the idea that humans are causing global warming, or that global warming is real – nevermind that it’s caused by humans or not. Needless to say, climate change can be linked to human activities with a close to certain probability: 99.999%. But while the consensus on global warming among scientists has become even more entrenched, the subject has been polarized in the media to great lengths. As if it’s a matter for debate. It’s not really – it’s just the details that are worth debating. The fact that global warming is happening now and is accelerated by human activities is undeniable, yet many Republican Presidential candidates seem to refuse to acknowledge this out of ignorance or some other interest. Sen. Marco Rubio  says “there’s no consensus”, Sen. Ted Cruz  likens climate change proponents with “flat-Earthers” and Donald Trump… well.

Of all the major conservative parties in the democratic world, the Republican Party stands alone in its denial of the legitimacy of climate science. Within this context, it’s refreshing to hear some Republican Presidential candidates aren’t so adversarial to science. Last night during the GOP undercard debate, not one, but two candidates ‘kept it real’.  New York Gov. George Pataki, for instance, said: “One of the things that troubles me about the Republican Party is too often we question science that everyone accepts.”

Sen. Lindsey Graham continued in the same note.

“You don’t have to believe that climate change is real. [But] I have been to the Antarctic, I have been to Alaska,” he said. “I’m not a scientist, and I’ve got the grades to prove it. But I’ve talked to the climatologists of the world, and 90 percent of them are telling me tat the greenhouse gas effect is real. That we’re heating up the planet. I just want a solution that would be good for the economy that doesn’t destroy it.”

It might not be long until climate change becomes a mainstream part of the Republican rhetoric. After all, politicians merely reflect what their electorate thinks. ZME Science previously reported that 73 percent of Americans believe global warming is real and 79 percent favor some sort of government intervention on the issue. According to a report issued by the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication a strong majority of respondents who identify as “liberal Republicans” believe global warming is happening — 68 percent — as do 62 percent of moderate Republicans. But only 38 percent of Conservative Republicans acknowledged climate change, while of those who self-identified with “tea party”  only 29 percent did so also. Since most Republicans fall in the latter two groups, overall only 44 percent of Republicans believe global warming to be true. Even so, it suggests a shift in the way Republican voters understand climate change.

via ThinkProgress

63 thoughts on “Oddly enough, some Republicans think climate change is real

  1. MovieReelBen

    There was a time when people said “How do we know that asbestos causes cancer, and lets say it is true, how do we fix it, pay more for other stuff?” except for we’ve already done the science to prove its real this time.

  2. 221112

    What a glut of emotionally based thinking, the planet is warming from the sun and solar system activities as it has many times over the centuries. What you are talking about is human pollution which does not affect the earth as a whole. What kind of political hogwash are you perpetuating with this report. There is enough lying going on in the human sphere of things you are supposed to be a science based site not political. You should be ashamed of yourselves these kind of untruths are destroying humanity. Give me some logic based specifics, based on science that, backs up this claim.

  3. Funkenstein✓FuNk-ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    Oh the climate changes, everybody knows that. The issue is whether we want to raise taxes and fees, which only end up hurting the already-burdened taxpayer and consumer.

    No amount of tax increase is ever going to stop the earth’s climate from changing.

    If you earthy-crunchies wanted real ‘change’ you’d be over in Asia protesting their industry. Oh yea, you’d end up in jail. lol!

  4. bob131313

    This doesn’t have to be a weirdly adversarial thing. If Republicans don’t like the current ideas on the table (alternative energies, reducing emissions, etc.), fair enough. There are plenty of bright Republicans out there, and I’d love to hear their ideas.

    What’s silly is to just keep insisting a) the problem isn’t real, or b) nothing can be done. Since when are Republicans woe-is-me defeatists? I would’ve thought Republicans would love nothing more than to be able to take credit for solving a huge problem. Instead they’re throwing in the towel already? C’mon…

  5. suejak

    Uh, if you’re interested in the science on anthropogenic global warming, you can check out the websites of NASA, the EPA, the IPCC, or the United Nations. It is established fact within the scientific community.

  6. Dan JS

    Except on climate, the scientists already missed some serious predictions. Scientists predicted that by 1970 our food production would not be enough to sustain the world. Predicted that by 2010 many coastal cities would flood. Predicted that resources would be depleted by 1990. On and on, these predictions proved false. People have little faith in mother nature. Oh and just so you know – there was a time when Sahara and Middle East was full of lush jungles. Why do you think we pull so much oli from there? Yea it was REALLY warm one time. Many thousands of years before humans even walked on Earth. Oh and finally – guess what? Mars has the same temperature rises as Earth – but we attribute those to solar flare ups.

  7. Jacob

    It does not have to be solved with taxes. I don’t know why that is the first and only solution most people associate with climate change, is it part of the GOP anti climate change rhetoric?

    Even if that was the only answer, whining about taxes is infantile when considering the global security implications of this.
    The whole Syria conflict has roots in drought and crop failure, and is putting an enormous burden on its neighboring countries.

    If that were to happen in South/Central america, you run the risk of mass migrations into the US as well, at least you can be happy your tax money paid for all that military hardware to wage war on the desperate.

    There are many ways we can reduce emission and create a sustainable industry that will still produce goods and also leave the earth in a state that is habitable for our children. Force the industries to take responsibility for the cleanup and emission.

    The last 30 years we have been industrializing in a way that is unsustainable in the long run. We’ve come to take this prosperity for granted without thinking of the long term consequences.

    Acknowledging climate change would be the first step to actually reconcile human responsibility in the way we industrialize, so that we don’t run out of resources and leave parts of the earth uninhabitable. If the US adopted a stance of sustainability, it could pressure the rest of the world to do the same.

  8. MovieReelBen

    Politicians also predicted the economy would tank under Obama and that the unemployment rate would rise. Predictions can be wrong. Site your sources if you’re going to post facts that matter and learn the meaning of words like “prediction” before you use them because you seem to think a prediction is guaranteed to happen.

  9. Rob Biggs

    It does have to be adversarial, it absolutely does. On the on hand we have rational people wanting to be left alone, and on the other are raging eco-facist totalitarians intent on controlling every aspect of human life. Of course eco-fascists are going to be adversarial, they’re fighting a war to control the world.

  10. Dan JS

    So if prediction is not guaranteed to happen, why waste time with global change or warming? It’s just a tax man in a green suite.

    And as far as unemployment – under Obama there are more people that came off the payroll ranks than under any other president in history. People gave up!

  11. MovieReelBen

    Again, I’ll ask you to cite your sources, but I can tell that won’t be happening because you’d rather just argue abstract points like why predictions should ever be made if they can be wrong.

    As for the tax, if you want to discuss why a tax for the government to help combat global warming isn’t something you find to be necessary and maybe even other ideas to combat it that’s fine and healthy. But denying it by quoting rhetoric and not citing any sources for it when there is countless sources proving its a thing is not healthy mentally nor for the world.

  12. mike

    You’re exactly right. I’d settle for the US just discontinuing it’s subsidies for oil and gas. That would actually help cut all of our taxes, and would give emerging energy technologies a fighting chance to overtake the established industries (which, of course, have received billions, if not trillions, in US government investment and subsidies over the last century).

  13. mike

    If you want to talk labor participation rate, you need to control for age. Boomers are hitting retirement age and no longer have to work to get health insurance, so they are able to retire. That’s not a failure.

  14. mike

    You could just discontinue billions of dollars in annual subsidies to oil and gas companies, and actually pay less taxes. Or acknowledge there’s a problem. No one is saying the GOP needs to solve it all by themselves, but they are the .01% that disagrees with the rest of the world about whether it’s happening. And they disagree by noting, ironically, that they are not scientists.

  15. Dan JS

    In 2009, world leaders met in Copenhagen, Denmark to potentially hash

    out another climate treaty. That same year, the head of Canada’s Green
    Party wrote that there was only “hours” left to stop global warming.

    “We have hours to act to avert a slow-motion tsunami that could
    destroy civilization as we know it,” Elizabeth May, leader of the Greens
    in Canada, wrote in 2009. “Earth has a long
    time. Humanity does not. We need to act urgently. We no longer have
    decades; we have hours. We mark that in Earth Hour on Saturday.”

    Also in 2009 – we only had 50 days to save the planet

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/8313672.stm

    UN in 2007

    Pachauri in 2007: ‘If there’s no action before 2012, that’s too
    late. What we do in the next two to three years will determine our
    future. This is the defining moment’

    In 2002 we only had 10 years

    http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2002/dec/24/christmas.famine

    Also 1989 was the tipping point for climate change

    http://nl.newsbank.com/nl-search/we/Archives?p_product=SJ&s_site=mercurynews&p_multi=SJ&p_theme=realcities&p_action=search&p_maxdocs=200&p_topdoc=1&p_text_direct-0=0EB7304FF9A84273&p_field_direct-0=document_id&p_perpage=10&p_sort=YMD_date:D&s_trackval=GooglePM

    Internet is going to be a nasty thing for these ‘scientists’ since it proves over and over they are wrong.

  16. bob131313

    Many researchers have made predictions. Some of them irresponsible. It would be very easy to find incorrect predictions made by experts in any and all walks of life.

    You can find ample evidence of projections proving quite accurate: http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/mar/27/climate-change-model-global-warming http://www.universetoday.com/94468/1981-climate-change-predictions-were-eerily-accurate/
    http://www.livescience.com/25367-first-ipcc-climate-report-accurate.html

    But rather than cherry-picking any individual study, good or bad, it’s likely more useful to simply look at the consensus (or at least most agreed-upon) ideas. And as Graham said, you have 90%+ of people who know a heck of a lot about this stuff saying similar things.

    One analogy I remember reading that I thought was useful was to imagine dumping a bunch of rubber “super balls” down a stairwell. Some individual balls will bounce very high. If you take a snapshot of a given selection of balls at any one moment in time, the balls may not be where you’d expect. Some may even be above the top step.

    But that doesn’t mean gravity isn’t real. And it doesn’t mean the general trend of the balls heading downward is inaccurate.

  17. Dan JS

    I agree! However why do you think all the democrats are behind global warming? In name of science? or to save the world? HELL NO. They see this as new untapped revenue source – called taxes. This is why GOP is against it. And like I said – global warming proved to grow cops at much higher rates. So bring it on!

  18. MovieReelBen

    And once again I’ll say that predictions can be wrong, especially those by a Green Party politician and a a journalist. I thought you were going to have sources for “Mars has the same temperature rises as Earth – but we attribute those to solar flare ups.” since that seemed like something worth citing than more predictions that can be wrong.

    If you have any actual scientific studies with predictions you’d like to cite then that’d be something actually able to be verified on. Like say this incredibly detailed and mapped out page of proof from NASA and their climate scientists http://climate.nasa.gov/evidence/

  19. Dan JS

    And like I said – tax man in a green suite. Imagine the earth warms up, more evaporation takes place, more rain fall, more crops to feed the poor. Maybe we can have forests in Sahara again – like we used to have?

  20. MovieReelBen

    Oh, so we’re just ignoring facts and proof now and just rambling with strawman “tax man in a green suite” tripe and assumption that warming makes more rain so makes more crops, not that more heat kills more cops? Thanks for proving that you have no scientific sources or actual proof for anything you’re saying, you just want to regurgitate false arguments to the contrary you’ve been told, I’m sure, by the likes of Fox News that make you feel smart instead of reading this NASA site I linked that explains it in clear English why Global Warming is real and it’s bad

  21. Dan JS

    Yes it was real and bad in the 70s too! Just like everything we eat will cause cancer. Maybe we should do a tax on cancer? Global Warming made this planet lush hundreds of thousands of years ago. It will happen again as it is a normal cycle. Oh and guess what! Temperatures on mars are up as well. They are happening because of solar flare ups! Same exact relative temps as on Earth!

    Oh and hey the government just told us pumpkins cause global warming as well

    http://energy.gov/articles/turn-your-halloween-pumpkins-power

  22. Brian Donovan

    Let’s not call it taxes. Let’s call it fine for polluting.

    Whatever you call it, fossils get 5.3 TRILLION dollars in gov breaks (IMF). Let’s eliminate those first.

    Let’s remove gov barriers to solar, wind, waste to synthetic fuels and eletric cars, which are already cheaper than fossils and nuclear and have ample free distributed fuels forever.

    Conservatives will buy a bulb that save the money, unless you put a “good for the environment” label on it!

  23. MovieReelBen

    “Temperatures on mars are up as well.” hey, look its that again, that thing you said earlier and I asked for a source on that you still have yet to do.

    Anyways, as I said earlier, if you want to talk about how to combat Global Warming then lets totally do that, maybe taxes so the government can do things to combat it isn’t the best way. I’m all for discussing alternatives to that because I’m an adult and willing to hear other ideas on something that isn’t a known fact and would like to find the best method.

    You know what isn’t a discussion though, that Global Warming is a negative reality that humanity has caused. Yes, temperatures rose in the past causing the end of the ice age, but then they were also relatively even temperatures since then until humanity has increased the PPM of CO2. All of that though is in the NASA source I linked which I’m sure you read just as I read through your sources before spouting off counters.

  24. Deadrody

    Funny that you don’t use the nonsensical politically correct term for it – climate change. Because there is no such theory. Indeed, there IS a theory of AGW, of course one minor inconvenience is that the globe hasn’t actually warmed (statistically) in nearly two decades. And it sure hasn’t warmed anywhere NEAR what all the models predicted it would.

    It is not fact, it is theory. One that has been nullified many times over when the predictions did not come true.

  25. Deadrody

    Except that a) the problem is not real, and b) even if it were, there is nothing to be done about it. Least of all in the US.

  26. Nick in St. Louis

    Or create legislation that brings manufacturing jobs back to the states where we can regulate the polluters and rebuild the middle class…. If you keep buying stuff made in China you are contributing to the problem. Buy american made products! Support American workers! People need to take action and stop bitching.

  27. Ralph rodgers

    people guess what… the earth heats up and it cools down due to the SUN.. WE cannot change the temperature of the planet this is common sense. using the “government” own data there were time where the “co2” is much higher then now and we were going through a ice age and guess what.. Wouldn’t you know the earth heated up again with no man on the planet to cause GLOBAL WARMING. this is all a big government controlling and taxes you for a NATURAL gas we all produce.. what better way to tax and regulate YOU.. wake up people

  28. Funkenstein✓FuNk-ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    Why shouldn’t we buy stuff from China or Mexico? Our government created rules that allow the citizens to buy cheap products from other countries, as well as create businesses in other countries, while simultaneously over-taxing and over-regulating the US companies …which had the effect of driving costs up …which had the effect of driving these companies to do business outside of our borders.

    It is obviously to everyone but statists that government created this mess.

    Only a fool looks back to government to fix it.

  29. 221112

    Your sources are suspect, the NASA scientist was discredited, the EPA is not reporting on the Japanese radiation off our West coast, and is a tool of the politicians, the UN wants this to charge a CO2 tax they can collect…..get he true facts.

    Sent from my iPad

    Daniel Ferrara
    Ferrara Design Inc
    Global Village Shelters

  30. Brian Donovan

    Gosh, did you think of that on your own, or is it on your cheat sheet? Human breath is insignificant climate wise. Go ahead, do the math, prove me wrong! LOL!

  31. Thijs R.

    Dude, what are you talking about? The earth is fully solar powered already. We are just ridiculously bad at harnessing its power. What you’re doing is being defeatist before we’re even there. That’s why we need to go all in on research into renewables. Like an Apollo plan for energy. If not, that civilization you talk of eventually, slowly, gradually, fill fall into decline, until somebody finally finds a solution. That’s just a bad plan man…

  32. Progressive Republican

    I’ve noticed over the last year that more conservatives are acknowledging the reality of global climate change.

    Finally.

    The vast majority refuse to admit that Man has any role in it, however. I usually get the “Man is too puny” schtick.

  33. Progressive Republican

    No. The GOP is against it because their corporate handlers (Big Oil in this case) are against it.

  34. Progressive Republican

    Actually, the globe has warmed statistically over the last two decades.

    But one would have to be honest, or at least accurately informed to admit this.

  35. bob131313

    Look, I completely agree with you that many Democrats are “behind global warming” for political gain. I don’t believe for a second they’ve done their research. I don’t give Democratic politicians credit for agreeing with an argument that happens to be correct if the only reason they’re agreeing is for political reasons.

    But you should be able to recognize that while Democrats land on one side of the argument for the benefit of their own careers, Republicans do as well. I am not a cheerleader for a political party. I am a human being doing his best to figure out what is correct and incorrect in the world in which I am living. And so however people come to recognize that global warming is a real threat–be it that they were convinced, bribed, hoodwinked, hypnotized, etc.–I don’t really care. I just welcome that they’re finally joining the scientific community here in reality.

    My general outlook is pretty simple. When somebody makes a claim, I say “prove it.” I don’t declare myself an x or a y. I try to seek out objective truth (or as close as our advanced-but-still-primate brains can get to it).

    In the case of global warming/climate change/whatever you want to call it, I do not give the smallest flying f WHY or HOW various politicians came to arrive on the correct side of things. I only care IF they came to arrive on the correct side of things.

    I don’t know what you do for a living, but my guess is you would laugh in the face of a climate scientist coming in and telling you that he or she was more of an expert than you in your field. So all I ask is that you pay them the same respect.

  36. bob131313

    Congratulations on parroting talking points.

    If i told you that a meteor that could destroy the planet was headed at Earth and was a week away, your reaction would not be “oh no, that could raise taxes and fees!”

    You’d want to solve the problem.

    So stop letting politicians do your speaking for you. It’s your planet as much as it is theirs.

    Don’t listen to Democrats. They’re being bribed. Don’t listen to Republicans. They’re also being bribed. And don’t listen to cable news or self-identified “x-leaning” blogs, for the love of all that is holy, because those are the worst of all.

    There are plenty of great scientific papers and journals that can inform you about a whole lot of issues, and unlike politicians, blogs, or cable news channels, they actually tell you who their sources of funding are. :-)

  37. Steve Spence

    Is the Earth warming? No. So is AGW real? No. Has man affected global temperature? Absolutely not. Stop fudging the data, and making ridiculous conclusions. You 99.999% is an outright lie. Report on the science, and leave the religion at the door. Climate change has been happening for longer than our memories, and will continue after we are gone.

  38. Cokay

    “Of all the major conservative parties in the democratic world, the Republican Party stands alone in its denial of the legitimacy of climate science. ”

    The ignorance that exudes in the Republican Party is only exceeded by their refusal to embrace reality if it doesn’t fit their fantasy.

  39. Joe

    Renewable energy already provides over 1/10th of our energy needs. Rooftop solar systems alone could generate a significant portion of our household energy; It’s growing ever increasingly closer to being cost efficient to have wholly self-sufficient solar powered homes. Take into account the addition of Solar and wind farms and other alternatives and renewable energies can provide a huge amount of energy. The Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory did a comprehensive study showing that renewable energy could easily provide 80% of our electricity needs by 2050.

  40. Guest2000

    Seriously, what colour is the sky in your crazy tiny bubble of the universe? As a non-american, I just cannot fathom people who think like this, let alone most of a political party! What happened to you USA? You used to be the joy/dream/future of the world. Do Americans not realize they have become the absolute laughing stock of the world?

  41. Guest2000

    People guess what .. this is total fabrication. At least read some science. I dearly hope your not using your real name for your future family to see on the internet.

  42. Ralph rodgers

    The science you say, the same scientist who said in the 80’s we were heading into a ice age? what about the ones in 2000 that said there will be no more ice caps and New Orleans would be flooded.. Those scientist? Do you even know how they come up with 97% scientists believe in “global warming” go read that and then come back and we can talk.. Joe Bastardi who is a meteorologist says global warming is bs.. But I guess a man who studies weather for a living is just a big old ignorant conservative..

  43. Doc Climate

    Ralph, Wise up! Bastardi, like all professional climate deniers is a denier-for -hire, paid by the notorious fossil fuel front The Heartland Institute, which used to be in the business of denying that smoking causes lung cancer. See Scientific American online, “Dark Money and “How to win friends and bamboozle people about climate change” and the DeSmog Blog one of TIME’s Top Ten Blogs and check out Exxon’ and the Koch brothers clandestine funding of this multimillion-dollar corporate scam.

  44. Ralph rodgers

    Ha ha, who do you think funds all these climate studies? The U.S. Gov.. It’s actually a good sceem, you pay for the “data” and you use that data to tax and regulate the citizens.. And if you must know, water vapor traps way more heat than carbon.. Go do some research

  45. Brian Donovan

    Calculate how much my breath contributes compared to fossil fuel use emissions of 400 times all the volcanoes combined.

    You can’t, but you thought you were funny.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.