George Pataki (Credit: CNBC)

George Pataki: "The problem with the GOP is we question science everyone accepts," like vaccines and climate change

The former New York governor attacked his own party's position on climate change and vaccines


Scott Eric Kaufman
October 29, 2015 2:59AM (UTC)

In the GOP undercard debate, former New York Governor George Pataki attacked his own party for "questioning positions everyone accepts."

He complained that Republicans publicly doubt whether "putting CO2 into the atmosphere makes the Earth warmer. Does it? It's uncontroverted."

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"Part of the problem," he added, "is that Republicans think of climate change and think, 'Oh my god, we're going to have higher taxes, more Obama, more big government, the EPA shutting down factories!"

"I want Republicans to embrace innovation and technology," Pataki explained. "There's one country in the world that has fewer greenhouse emissions than any other in the world, and you know who that is? The United States. They're lower than they were in 1995, not because of a government program, but because of fracking and coal plants."

Whatever good will he had earned with environmentalists was likely lost by his last clause there, but unlike the men with whom he was sharing the state, he did at least try to pretend that he lives in the 21st Century.

Watch the debate live via CNBC.


Scott Eric Kaufman

Scott Eric Kaufman is an assistant editor at Salon. He taught at a university, but then thought better of it. Follow him at @scottekaufman or email him at skaufman@salon.com.

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