Vice President Mike Pence avoided pointed questions about climate change during an interview on Sunday, even as President Donald Trump’s administration continues to suppress studies about the severity of the climate crisis.
While being questioned by CNN’s Jake Tapper, Pence listened to the anchor quote Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats discussing the geopolitical threat posed by climate change. Tapper then mentioned how the EPA had rolled back part of former President Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan before asking the vice president, “Do you think human-induced climate emergency is a threat to the United States?”
Pence responded, “Well, what I will tell you is that we will always follow the science on that in this administration.”
“The science says, ‘It is,'” Tapper interjected.
Pence continued, arguing that what the Trump administration “won’t do — and the Clean Power Plan was all about that — was hamstringing energy in this country, raising the cost of the utility rates for working families across this country while other nations like China and India do absolutely nothing or make illusory promises decades down the road to deal with it.”
He added, “You know, the truth of the matter is with the advent of natural gas, with the natural gas explosion that’s developing, with clean coal technology, we’re seeing we’re seeing a significant reduction of carbon emissions all across this country.”
Tapper revisited his earlier question by asking Pence, “But is what people are calling the climate emergency — is it a threat? Do you think it’s a threat? Man-made climate emergency is a threat?”
After Pence repeated his earlier reply —”I think the answer to that is going to be based upon the science” — before Tapper added that many experts in Trump’s own administration recognize the seriousness of the crisis. Pence then pivoted back to discussing whether utility rates would be raised by effective climate change regulations.
As Pence dodged Tapper’s questions, the Trump administration has refused to publicize dozens of government-funded studies, which reveal the long-term effects of man-made climate change as compiled by scientists at the Department of Agriculture, according to Politico.
“The intent is to try to suppress a message — in this case, the increasing danger of human-caused climate change. Who loses out? The people, who are already suffering the impacts of sea level rise and unprecedented super storms, droughts, wildfires and heat waves,” Michael E. Mann, a leading climate scientist at Pennsylvania State University, told Politico about the suppressed studies.
The site reported that they include “a groundbreaking discovery that rice loses vitamins in a carbon-rich environment — a potentially serious health concern for the 600 million people world-wide whose diet consists mostly of rice” and learning that “climate change could exacerbate allergy seasons to a warning to farmers about the reduction in quality of grasses important for raising cattle.”
Mann expressed similar thoughts to Salon last month, when it was revealed that the Environmental Protection Agency would redefine environmental standards to allow for more air pollution.
“This is a logical next step in the effort by Trump and the polluting interests that dictate his environmental policies to dismantle the environmental protections of the past half century put in place by past both Republican and Democratic presidents,” Mann told Salon.
He added, “Let me be blunt: Trump is choosing to kill people in order to increase the profits of the polluting interests to which he is beholden. I cannot think of a more craven act than this, and we’re talking about a president who is known for craven acts. There is a reason I warned back in October 2016 that Trump is a threat to the planet.”
You can watch more from Pence’s interview below:
— State of the Union (@CNNSotu) June 23, 2019
WATCH: Saturday Night Live airs Christmas special — that’s just one giant dig at the Electoral College
NBC's "Saturday Night Live" aired an opening skit that was just one giant attack on the electoral college.
A snowman introduced the segment, saying that we could look in on the holiday table conversation thanks to hacked Nest cams.
The skit featured a house in San Francisco, California, a second in Charleston, South Carolina and a third in Atlanta, Georgia.
Each dinner table debated impeachment, and the differences between President Donald Trump and his predecessor, President Barack Obama.
But then the snowman said that none of their votes matter.
"They'll debate the issues all year long, but then it all comes down to 1,000 people in Wisconsin who won't even think about the election until the morning of," the snowman said. "And that's the magic of the Electoral College."
Georgia mayor being recalled for racism resigns from office: report
Hoschton Mayor Theresa Kenerly resigned in a special city council meeting held on Saturday, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported Saturday.
"The resignation came just days after Councilman Jim Cleveland resigned saying he‘d rather leave office on his own terms than face voters in a recall election next month," the newspaper reported. "Both resignations follow an AJC investigation launched seven months ago into claims that an African American candidate for city administrator was sidetracked by Mayor Theresa Kenerly because of his race."
‘You can say Merry Christmas again’: Lara and Eric Trump declare victory in the War on Christmas
For years, conservatives have complained about a "War on Christmas" -- but President Donald Trump finally won the war, according to his son and daughter-in-law.
Fox News personality Jeanine Pirro interviewed Eric Trump and his wife Lara in Trump Tower, which Pirro called the "New York White House."
Pirro told the two they had "done wonderful things for the country" and said Trump had ended political correctness and people could say "Merry Christmas."
"You can say Merry Christmas again," Lara Trump said. "Isn't that so nice, Jeanine?"
"It's incredible," Eric Trump said. "It is nice to say Merry Christmas again."