Cross-posted from the Wonk Room.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), once a champion of strong action to fight global warming pollution, has joined the rest of the Republican Senate caucus in questioning the overwhelming science. From 2003 to 2007, McCain pressed for Congress to pass comprehensive cap-and-trade legislation to ratchet down greenhouse gas pollution, because, he said, global warming is “such a threat to our planet and our future and our children.” Now, like every other GOP candidate for the U.S. Senate this year, he opposes the climate policy he once supported. In a little-noted appearance stumping for Senate candidate (and fellow denier) Kelly Ayotte in Nashua, N.H., this March, McCain gave credence to the outlandish Climategate smear campaign against climate science:
I think it’s an inexact science, and there has been more and more questioning about some of the conclusions that were reached concerning climate change. And I believe that everybody in the world deserves correct answers whether the scientific conclusions were flawed by outside influences. There’s great questions about it that need to be resolved. [Emphasis mine.]
McCain went on to argue, in video captured by Gather.com contributor David Anderson, that it’s only possible to reduce greenhouse gas emissions with nuclear power, his personal, scientifically unfounded obsession.
In 2007, McCain said of global warming: “Unequivocally I believe that it’s real.” He also accurately predicted that global warming means “much more violent weather patterns that are going to — and then of course that increases the disasters that befall countries like Bangladesh.” Sadly, now that Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh have faced catastrophic floods of an unprecedented scale during the hottest year ever recorded, McCain is a global warming skeptic. The Straight Talk Express has derailed into the Tea Party abyss.
(h/t New Hampshire Primary)