Skip to content
Grist home
Support nonprofit news

Articles by Sean McElwee

Sean McElwee is a writer and a research associate at Demos.

Featured Article

This story was originally published by Mother Jones and is reproduced here as part of the Climate Desk collaboration.

The science behind climate change is indisputable. With more than 190 countries signing off on a historic climate deal, the case for action has never been more clear. And yet in the United States, one of the major political parties and most of its presidential candidates stand firmly against even market-friendly policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Why?

This question has vexed pundits, academics, and scientists for decades. New York magazine’s Jonathan Chait recently examined new research from the University of Bergen in Norway and provocatively asked, “Why are Republicans the only climate-science-denying party in the world?” One reason, he argues, is that “the virulence of anti-government ideology in the United States has no parallel anywhere in the world.” While this is certainly true, it can’t explain the fact that a recent survey and other data suggest that the majority of Republican voters accept the science behind global warming.

Here’s another possible explanation for the GOP’s in... Read more