(Transcript of video here.)
From The Hill:
House Republicans rejected amendments offered Tuesday by Democrats that called on Congress to accept the scientific consensus that climate change is occurring, it is caused in large part by human activity and it is a threat to human health.
The amendments, offered at an Energy and Commerce Committee markup of legislation to block Environmental Protection Agency climate change rules, are part of an effort by House Democrats to get Republicans on the record on climate science.
Committee ranking Democrat Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) offered an amendment Tuesday that called on Congress to agree that climate change is occurring. The amendment failed on a party-line vote of 20-31. No Republicans voted for the amendment.
Two more amendments along the same line also failed on party line votes. The blog Skeptical Science, writing before the Republican anti-science bill passed, commented:
Fortunately, as Congressman Markey noted, even if the bill is passed by the House of Representatives, it has little chance of passing in the Democrat-controlled Senate, and if it were to pass there, President Obama would almost certainly veto this legislation.
Nevertheless, the mere existence of the bill is an ominous sign of the Republican war on climate science, in which they believe they can overturn scientific evidence based on nothing more than the ignorant opinions of a few politicians. Similarly, Republicans in the Montana state legislature recently introduced a bill which stated, among other scientific falsehoods,
“global warming is a natural occurrence and human activity has not accelerated it.”
It seems as though Republicans think that politics can dictate science. Unfortunately, passing legislation saying that humans are not causing global warming, or that greenhouse gas emissions do not pose a threat to public health and welfare, does not change the physical reality that these statements are simply wrong.
Unfortunately, it’s clear that Republicans and conservatives are not open to reasoned persuasion. They believe, as a matter of religious faith (or perhaps just expedience), that in any conflict between science and corporate profits, science is wrong; there is no imaginable argument or evidence that will make any important Republican change their mind about this.
Bill O’Reilly is, by a wide margin, the most-listened-to conservative on TV; he’s also an idiot who says that God must exist, because “Tide goes in, tide goes out. Never a miscommunication. You can’t explain that.” My problem isn’t that O’Reilly is an ignoramus. My problem is that few if any of his millions of conservative admirers will think any less of him, or take him any less seriously, because he’s an ignoramus. And that’s absolutely typical of the conservative movement. There are few if any conservatives who will withhold their votes from the Republicans who voted for ignorance and against science yesterday, because conservatives, as a movement, are for ignorance and against science.