- The Washington Times - Friday, June 2, 2017

A day after President Trump announced the U.S. would exit the Paris climate accord, top administration officials wouldn’t say whether the president believes global warming is real.

Pressed on the matter at a White House briefing Friday, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt repeatedly dodged the question and would focus only on the economic harm that would result from the Paris agreement.

“The president and I focused our attention there. He determined it was bad for our country,” Mr. Pruitt said after being asked about the president’s opinion on climate change.

Mr. Trump said Thursday the U.S. will leave the Paris deal, which committed the country to lowering its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 26 percent by 2030. He said he’s open to renegotiating the deal, or crafting an entirely new agreement that’s fairer to U.S. interests.

Since the election, the president has been vague about his personal views on climate change. Before entering the political realm, he called climate change a “hoax” and suggested it was invented by the Chinese.

For his part, Mr. Pruitt said he believes climate change is real.

“In fact, global warming is occurring, that human activity is contributing to it in some manner. Measuring with precision [the impact], from my perspective, is very challenging,” he told reporters. “People have called me a climate skeptic or a climate denier. I don’t even know what it means to deny the climate. I would say there are climate exaggerators.”

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