Wisconsin GOP Senate Candidate Ron Johnson Says Climate Change Unproven

Brendan DeMelle DeSmog
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Another day, another GOP candidate in denial about the scientific facts of climate change. This election season in the U.S. has been overrun with GOP and Tea Party-backed candidates who deny the existence of global warming, and therefore willingly ignore and denigrate science as a whole.

The latest example is Wisconsin GOP candidate for U.S. Senate, Ron Johnson, who calls climate change “unproven.”

“The science of global warming is unproven,” he said. “It just is,” Johnson told The Associated Press on Thursday.

“I’m not even sure if, if it were a fact, whether we could do anything about it anyway,” Johnson said.

This isn’t a major change of heart for Johnson, who called global warming “lunacy” earlier this summer.  He has labeled any and all who subscribe to the overwhelming scientific consensus that climate change is real and driven by human activity “crazy.” He has described legislative efforts to address global warming pollution as “a fool’s errand.”

Here’s a video of Johnson saying all that, plus this: “It’s far more likely that it’s just sunspot activity or something just in the geologic eons of time where we have changes in the climate.”  Note also his response at the end to the question about what he thinks CO2 does, “I think it’s sucked down by trees and helps trees grow.”

There’s your science lesson for today, kids, courtesy of the GOP science department.

The Wisconsin Democratic Party put together a mashup mocking Johnson’s various statements on climate change: 

Johnson is running against incumbent Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold, whose campaign office was quick to declare Johnson’s views “out of touch with reality.”

“His belief that he knows better than most of the scientists in the world is dangerous,” said Feingold campaign spokesman John Kraus.

Dangerous and entirely baseless, but unfortunately all too common these days as the right wing continues its war on science and reason.   

As RL Miller writes in her latest ‘Climate Zombies’ installment at Grist, “their stupid has gone viral. And if they win, humanity loses.”

With just four weeks left to go until voters head to the polls, the GOP’s anti-science, climate denial movement rages on. For a complete look at the cast of science-hating characters, be sure to follow RL Miller’s ongoing ‘Climate Zombies’ series tracking every Republican candidate for House, Senate, and governor who doubts, denies, or derides the science of climate change. 

Brendan DeMelle DeSmog
Brendan is Executive Director of DeSmog. He is also a freelance writer and researcher specializing in media, politics, climate change and energy. His work has appeared in Vanity Fair, The Huffington Post, Grist, The Washington Times and other outlets.

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