Newly released Gallup polling seems to show a sharp drop in the percentage of Americans who know about, are concerned about, and understand the threat of global warming.
The piece leads with a graph showing a sharp increase in the percentage of Americans who think the seriousness of global warming is generally exaggerated:
When I saw this I immediately assumed the increase was due to the changing opinions of Republicans, and did not reflect a general trend within the broader population. As Joseph Romm has demonstrated, the GOP's understanding of climate science has been on a steady decline for years. More evidence of this here and here.
In the piece, Gallup notes that "evidence from last year showed that the issue of global warming was becoming heavily partisan in nature, and it may be that the continuing doubts about global warming put forth by conservatives and others are having an effect." I'll say.
Gallup has provided EnviroKnow with the full cross-tabs, which are available below. To illustrate the fact that the shifts shown in the poll are largely partisan in nature, I've produced a series of graphs based on the cross-tabs.
The fact that an equal number of Republicans (31 percent) believe that the effects of climate change have already begun as believe the effects will never happen is an excellent display of the schizophrenia of the Republican position on the issue.
Reasonable people can disagree on policy solutions for dealing with problems we face as a society. But the Republican party is playing a different game entirely. Republicans and conservative thought-leaders -- at the behest of the corporate polluters who bankroll their campaigns -- have made a conscious decision to deny the science in order to advance their political agenda. Put simply, they seem to think they are entitled to their own facts. Unfortunately for them, and ultimately for the rest of us as well, physics doesn't give a damn about politics.
Here are the full cross-tabs: