- Israel hits symbols of Hamas rule; scores killed
- Mississippi abortion law can’t be enforced
- Teacher who survived Sandy Hook has book deal
- Jury awards Jesse Ventura $1.8M in case vs. ‘American Sniper’ author Chris Kyle
- Middle Eastern firm’s deal to manage U.S. cargo port raises security concerns
- Bob McDonnell’s defense: Lonely wife developed ‘crush’ on CEO
- Chinese hackers stole ‘huge quantities’ of sensitive data on Israel’s Iron Dome
- House Republicans unveil bill to speed deportations of border children
- Californians protest middle school for hiring white man to teach cultural studies
- Killer’s sentencing overturned because mother couldn’t find seat in courtroom
Obama: Opposition on climate akin to smoking denialism
Question of the Day
As he bashed conservatives and the tea party, President Obama said Wednesday night that denial of man-made climate change is tantamount to not believing cigarettes cause cancer.
In a speech to the powerful environmental group, the League of Conservation Voters, the president continued his public battle with the tea party over his ambitious global-warming agenda, saying the "fringe elements" within the Republican Party continue to deny science and slow efforts to save the planet.
"Folks will tell you climate change is a hoax, or a fad, or a plot, it's a liberal plot," he said. "Many who say that actually know better and they're just embarrassed. They duck the question. They say 'I'm not a scientist," which really translates to, 'I accept man-made climate change is real, but if I say so out loud I'll be run out of town by a bunch of fringe elements ... I'll just pretend I don't know, that I can't read.'"
The president then said Republicans — or any other critics of his controversial actions to address climate change — don't need to be scientists or even understand much about carbon pollution to grasp the environmental threats facing the world.
"I'm not a doctor either, but if a bunch of doctors tell me tobacco can cause lung cancer, then I'll say, 'OK.' It's not that hard," he said.
Mr. Obama's speech to the influential organization came the same day White House officials met with billionaire climate activist and major Democratic party donor Tom Steyer. Mr. Steyer, along with former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and others, put forward a new report this week detailing the purported economic dangers that will result from climate change.
The report mirrors a recent White House study on the same subject, which Mr. Obama has used to explain and justify his dramatic actions.
Most notably, the president's Environmental Protection Agency has proposed harsh limits on carbon emissions from power plants, expected to deal a serious blow to the domestic coal industry.
While coal still provides nearly 40 percent of U.S. electricity and transformed the country during the Industrial Revolution, Mr. Obama urged developing countries such as China — far and away the world's biggest carbon polluter — to avoid the relatively cheap, readily available fuel.
He said China, India and other countries "should leapfrog some of the technologies, learn lessons from us, and go right to a clean energy future."
"We should lead by example," Mr. Obama said. "They're waiting to see what America does."
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Ben Wolfgang covers the White House for The Washington Times.
Before joining the Times in March 2011, Ben spent four years as a political reporter at the Republican-Herald in Pottsville, Pa.
He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- White House: No choice but to act now on climate change
- EPA hears testimony on proposed carbon emissions rules
- Russia in violation of 1987 missile treaty, White House says
- In politics, all states are 'border' states
- Libya now nation at risk with weak U.S. influence; embassy closes as chaos grows
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
- Boehner rules out impeachment: 'Scam started by Democrats'
- Obama thanks Muslims for 'building the very fabric of our nation'
- Obama's brother wears Hamas scarf bearing anti-Israel slogans in photo
- Tactical advantage: Russian military shows off impressive new gear
- Federal judge grants 90-day stay in D.C. gun case
- McCLAUGHRY: Finish off the "Islamic State" quickly and cheaply
- New York Times reporter Carol Vogel accused of plagiarism
- Iraqi Christians rally at White House: 'Obama, Obama, where are you?'
- Hillary Clinton: Forget Obama, George W. Bush made her 'proud to be an American'
- ISIL destroys key bridge leading to Baghdad; suicide truck bomb severed supply line
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world