Ever since Tea Party candidate Trey Gowdy defeated six term South Carolina Republican Bob Inglis in a runoff election in June, Ingles hasn't been reluctant to slam the direction his Republican Party is heading. Yesterday in Washington Inglis ripped the Republicans rejection of Climate Science.
Outgoing Republican Rep. Bob Inglis (S.C.) broke with his party today and publicly vented his frustration about the apparent turn toward climate skepticism in the next Congress, when Republicans will take control of the House.
Inglis made his frustration clear this morning at a House Science subcommittee hearing on the science of climate change.
"To my free enterprise colleagues, whether you think it's all a bunch of hooey, what we talk about in this committee -- the Chinese don't, and they plan on eating our lunch in the next century, working on these problems," Inglis said. "We may press the pause button for a few years, but China is pressing the fast-forward button."
Inglis, ranking member of the House Energy and Environment Subcommittee, also took aim at "people who make a lot of money on talk radio and talk TV saying a lot of things. They slept at a Holiday Inn Express last night, and they're experts on climate change. They substitute their judgment for people who have Ph.D.s and work tirelessly" on climate change.
In August David Corn interviewed Inglis about what's happening to his Republican Party in Mother Jones.
Asked why conservatives and Republicans have demonized the issue of climate change and clean energy, Inglis replies, "I wish I knew; then maybe I wouldn't have lost my election." He points out that some conservatives believe that any issue affecting the Earth is "the province of God and will not be affected by human activity. If you talk about the challenge of sustainability of the Earth's systems, it's an affront to that theological view."
Inglis says that it's hard for Republicans in Congress to "summon the courage" to say no to Beck, Limbaugh, and the tea party wing. "When we start just delivering rhetoric and more misinformation...we're failing the conservative movement," he says. "We're failing the country." Yet, he notes, Boehner and House minority whip Eric Cantor have one primary strategic calculation: Play to the tea party crowd. "It's a dangerous strategy," he contends, "to build conservatism on information and policies that are not credible."
Also yesterday in the same House Science Committee hearing Rep. Ralph Hall of Texas who is in line to become the next chairman of the Committee couldn't wait fling out some ignorant accusations to kick off the Republican Party's Inquisition of Climate Science, with a plan to pillory prominent climate scientists.
Climate skeptic in line to take over House Science Committee
"This administration argues that cutting greenhouse emissions as a policy directive is justified by science, Hall said at a hearing organized by Democrats and billed as a "rational discussion" on climate science before the GOP takes over. "I think this hearing today will demonstrate and should demonstrate that reasonable people have serious questions about our knowledge of the state of the science," he added.
Hall refused to detail which administration officials he’d like to haul before the committee, saying he needs to win the chairmanship first.
Hall spent his first 24 years in the House as a DINO until 2004 when he switched parties.
What kind of extensive background in science does Ralph draw on to come to his scholarly conclusion? Ralph has a law degree, and some experience as a bank executive. That makes Ralph eminently unqualified to sit in judgement of America's top climate scientists, and their dire consensus.
I don't have to tell you how urgent this issue is, yet instead of someone thoughtful like Bob Inglis the Republican Party gives us some lawyer named Ralph Hall from Rockwall County Texas who wants to put science on trial, instead of trying to formulate a rational response to an impending climate catastrophe.
my eKos diary from last week: Scientists to Fight GOP's Climate Science Inquisition -Shimkus: God will save us
UPDATE: Today Tomas Friedman writes this:
Closer to home, America's climate-deniers mounted an effective disinformation campaign that made "climate change" a four-letter word in the Republican Party. This undermined efforts to get a clean energy bill — the sort that might break our addiction to oil and take money away from the people our soldiers are fighting in the Middle East. And all of this happened in 2010, which is on track to be the Earth's hottest year on record. So here's the math: 98 climate scientists out of 100 will tell you that man's continued carbon emissions pose the risk of disruptive climate change this century. Two out of 100 will tell you it doesn't. And "conservatives" today tell you to bet on the two. If the climate-deniers are right — but we combat climate change anyway — we'll have slightly higher energy prices but cleaner air, more renewable energy, a stronger dollar, more innovative industries and enemies with less money. If the deniers are wrong and we do nothing, your kids will meet the sudden stop at the end.