Faced with global warming facts on the Rachel Maddow show last night, Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) countered, “It’s not true.” Maddow asked him to react to the 97 percent of scientists who agree that global warming is real. Although Inhofe was eager to point to anecdotal evidence for his conspiracy theories, he simply replied:
That isn’t true Rachel. You say something over and over again and your audience, particularly your liberal audience, they want to believe it [...] This 97 percent, that doesn’t mean anything. I’ve named literally thousands of scientists on the floor.
As a prominent climate denier and Big Oil favorite, Inhofe’s ignored the scientific evidence throughout the interview. But he’s not known for relying on scientific research — recently, he quoted the Bible as proof.
One of his points was that environmentalists aren’t “winning” despite outspending the energy industry 2-1. But environmentalists are the ones vastly outspent by dirty energy, 8 to 1 in lobbying and contributions during the climate bill debate. Inhofe’s evidence was a discredited Climate Shift report where even the leading expert on the report withdrew his name.
During the interview, Inhofe denied Big Oil’s mere existence, saying “because we hear things about big oil but what you hear is not all that big of oil.” Inhofe said the $4 billion in tax breaks to oil doesn’t count as a subsidy, even though he admitted the industry is “actually doing really well right now.” The top five oil companies alone made $137 billion in profits, while spending $146 million lobbying Congress to maintain those same tax breaks.
As Maddow herself pointed out, Inhofe benefits from polluters doing well — he’s taken almost $500,000 from oil and gas, and unsurprisingly Koch Industries is his No. 1.
Watch part 1 and part 2 of the interview: