Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), one of the world’s most vociferous climate skeptics, is practically giddy these days. He’s argued since 2003 that global warming is a massive “hoax” being played on the American people, and now he believes he’s got more backing than ever before for his claim, from “Climategate” emails to errors in the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change to the recent blizzards in Washington, D.C. (He gleefully hyped an igloo built by his grandkids as “Al Gore’s new home.”)

Inhofe didn’t get as much attention as he might have hoped for during his December visit to Copenhagen to denounce climate treaty negotiations, but he tried to reclaim the stage this week during a Senate hearing that addressed EPA’s efforts to regulate greenhouse gases. He argued that “the science of the IPCC … has been totally discredited” and unveiled an 84-page report titled ‘Consensus’ Exposed: The CRU Controversy. “It’s a report on the scandal that has become known as Climategate,” he explained. “Many of [the world’s leading climate] scientists have manipulated data to fit preconceived conclusions … They cooked the science.” Inhofe’s report even suggested that some climate scientists “may have violated federal laws.” (Watch his hearing statement below.)

I spoke with Inhofe by phone right after the hearing about who’s perpetrating the climate hoax, who’s being hoodwinked by it, and why he doesn’t believe clean energy creates jobs.