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GOP ‘Savior’ Marco Rubio Mocks Climate Change

By Adam Peck  

"GOP ‘Savior’ Marco Rubio Mocks Climate Change"

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Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) made an appearance on Fox and Friends Wednesday morning less than 12 hours after delivering the GOP rebuttal to President Obama’s State of the Union address. The Republican Party’s newest champion took the time to shoot down the realities of climate change and the kinds of regulations that he himself once supported as the speaker of the house in Florida.

During his speech on Tuesday, President Obama called for a market-based approach towards solving the climate crisis, stressing the economic as well as environmental benefits that derive from investments in clean energy. In response, Rubio attacked cap and trade legislation as an economic menace that would cripple the recovery, and he repeated the claim again this morning:

RUBIO: The government can’t change the weather. I said that in the speech. We can pass a bunch of laws that will destroy our economy, but it isn’t going to change the weather. Because, for example, there are other countries that are polluting in the atmosphere much greater than we are at this point, China, India, all these countries that are still growing. They’re not going to stop doing what they’re doing. America is a country, it’s not a planet. So we can pass a bunch of laws or executive orders that will do nothing to change the climate or the weather but will devastate our economy.

Watch it:

In fact, Rubio is wrong that “there are other countries that are polluting in the atmosphere much greater than we are at this point.” There is only one — China — and it is still a long way away from reaching America’s level of cumulative carbon pollution, and it is the total pollution emitted to date that drives climate change. That’s why it is so important America lead the way on climate action.

Rubio’s anti-science rhetoric is no surprise since he has also expressed skepticism towards the nearly universal consensus among scientists that humans have played a detrimental role in climate change.

While Rubio is right that America is not a planet, he is wrong to suggest that cap and trade — which has in the past enjoyed bipartisan support — would hinder economic growth. In fact, just last week a consortium of 9 northeastern states and the privately owned energy companies that power them announced they would be expanding a regional cap and trade system that has been in place since 2008, citing the positive economic and environmental benefits reaped over the last five years.

Rubio himself sought to turn Florida into “the Silicon Valley” of the green energy industry, lauding the state’s push for a version of cap and trade legislation as a potential moneymaker for Floridian businesses during a 2008 floor speech. There is also ample evidence to suggest that investments in renewable energy would help create millions of jobs and quicken the economic recovery, not hamper it as Rubio claims.

As President Obama noted in his address, other countries — China included — have raced ahead of the United States in the development of clean, alternative energy. And in Europe, countries like Germany have taken far greater strides than the U.S in solar energy, producing as much as 80 times more electricity relative to energy consumption through photovoltaic panels as compared to the United States.

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23 Responses to GOP ‘Savior’ Marco Rubio Mocks Climate Change

  1. fj says:

    Perfect candidate for the “Annals of Clowntown”.

  2. SecularAnimist says:

    Rubio is just another bought-and-paid-for stooge for the Koch Brothers, mouthing their scripted talking points.

  3. Dick says:

    It’s interesting that the idea of responsibility and world-leadership, so advocated in economic areas, is not advocated when it comes to climate or education, only guns, guns, guns.

  4. langostino says:

    Certainly climate change is going to devastate the economy. Haven’t you been paying attention? Aren’t you from Florida? Aren’t you of Cuban decent?

  5. GregB says:

    Yes, we are only one country but as with so many other issues, you lead by example and encourage others to follow. Apparently, Rubio doesn’t understand what it means to be a leader. And this guy wants to be President?

  6. Sasparilla says:

    He’s been a particularly close politician to the Koch’s – my gosh, the billionaire brothers would be beside themselves if they could get this Koch stooge into the Office in 2016.

    These good old boys already control the GOP on climate change and green energy (its their front organizations that promise a well funded primary contender if a GOP member votes for climate change or green energy legislation), the next step obvious step for them, at the federal level, would be the placement at the executive of an extreme friend.

    Obviously he was being positioned here, however bad the speech performance was… From Florida too, oh the irony.

  7. George says:

    This guy who hates government but was ok using government for himself and his father and mother is a total hypocrite like all Republicans and Rubio wants put a new face on the Republican Party, deceit, but at the same time this kid Rubio who carries the water for the rich white folks of Florida, shameful, voted against the VAWA and like that jerk Paul Ryan drinking water during his debate with VP Joe Biden and Joe handing Paul Ryan ass to the public, Rubio revealed his own distrust for his own words during Rubio’s response to SOTU the same gotcha slapped Rubio on the face and Rubio was sweating like a pig, fidgeting and dry mouth or a big ball of cotton mouth all examples of not believing his own words. Savior, even Christ was particular with who he associated with: NOT THE RICH.

  8. Niall says:

    I actually find myself about a quarter agreeing with this >epithet redacted<.

    Cap and trade is not a solution. One reason some businesses are in favour of it is because they can make a profit out of it. Meanwhile, if the cap is set too high the cost of carbon emissions ends up so low as to be meaningless, while providing ammunition for deniers who claim that the whole issue of climate change is a myth to enable people to make a profit out of it (ignoring the more likely explanation that the profiteers are acting more like opportunistic wartime spivs).

    So, the answer is not cap and trade. The answer is a cap.

    A toe cap.

  9. Andrew says:

    Cumulative pollution aside, our per-capita emissions are much higher, and that’s after off-shoring a good part of our energy intensive manufacturing. Since the Western world is Asia’s biggest customer, driving much of that growth, how about we come to an agreement that prices carbon, ensures equitable treatment, and provides some relief to those of lower income who may be impacted by higher energy costs? Easier said than done, I know.

  10. dam spahn says:

    What Climate Change? Those corn-rows of hair plugs on Rubio’s forehead are growing just fine!

  11. LeesiD says:

    Rubio doesn’t care about anyone’s ‘economy” but his own. He cares about his ‘teabagger” coffers and big oil that fund his and many Republican campaign war chests. People like Rubio make me sick!!

  12. Ken Barrows says:

    Not “growth” again! If what needs to be done to prevent the worst impacts of climate change hinders growth, so be it.

  13. Marie says:

    So he won’t be the “savior” after all — he will be the frontman for the extremists, the deniers, the troglodytes of the GOP.

  14. Lou Grinzo says:

    If there weren’t so much at stake, I would (almost) feel sorry for the Republicans.

    They’ve so thoroughly lashed themselves to the crazy portion of their voting base that they can’t even push someone for a president this far out from the election who isn’t howling-at-the-moon nuts on at least one or two issues.

    If the Republicans didn’t cater to the crazies, they’d get slaughtered in a series of elections until the crazies were marginalized. Good luck with that.

    (This also reminds me of the quote from Jefferson(?) who observed that living with slavery was like holding a wolf by the ears — you didn’t like it, but you didn’t dare let go.)

  15. The emerging leadership of the “stupid party” has a brilliant idea for climate change: do nothing.

  16. Merrelyn Emery says:

    As more and more people get touched by extreme weather and the bill keeps going up, I would expect some serious cracks to open up in the Republican party, if they aren’t apparent already. It’s difficult to deny reality for ever unless you are genuinely insane and that speech might be one of the last straws for sane Republicans, ME

  17. Ozonator says:

    “The government can’t change the weather” misses the point of a correct AGW fireball with correct AGW volcano predictions in the comments section of “‘Language Intelligence’ The Audiobook: Listen To ‘Lessons On Persuasion From Jesus, Shakespeare, Lincoln And Lady Gaga’ … By Joe Romm on Jan 12, 2013 at 2:26 pm” (http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2013/01/12/1439751/language-intelligence-audiobook-lessons-on-persuasion-from-jesus-shakespeare-lincoln-and-lady-gaga/#comment-654831).

  18. atcook27 says:

    Who gives a sh*t what this fossil fueled patsy has to say. The American people spoke load and clear last November. I have three words for him “Four more years…..Four more years….Four more….”.

  19. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    I think that the Kochtopus has a plan. It involves gerrymandering districts, interfering with the electoral college, relying on Obama to demoralise the Hope Fiends, leading to their withdrawal from the process, mass disenfranchisement of poor voters and collapsing the economy. The last is pretty certain, particularly if the poison of austerity is inflicted on the US economy. Personal indebtedness in the USA is still stratospheric, wage stagnation still the order of the day (thereby requiring yet more debt to finance ‘The American Way of Life’)and oil prices are steadily creeping up, a factor in the latest phase of the decades long process of market capitalist implosion. The plutocrats are still sitting on trillions, not investing in wealth production, when wealth extraction through financial chicanery and rentier activities is so much easier. Another leg down in the economy, around 2014-5, and a candidate more marketable than Romney, and the tentacles will reach right into the Oval Office.

  20. finny says:

    No laws cleaned up the smog in California if i remember. It was magic.

  21. Nabil Al-Murabit says:

    If there’s no such thing as climate change, then why in the hell was he so thirsty last night?