Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

Pat Toomey: Human activity might not be main cause of global warming

As many people have already pointed out, some of the leading beneficiaries of this season of Tea Party craziness are Republican candidates who hold extreme views on specific issues but nonetheless come across as moderate and reasonable when compared to the likes of Sharron Angle and Christine O'Donnell.

Case in point: Pennsylvania Senate candidate Pat Toomey. In a local radio interview on Friday, Toomey said the degree to which human activity is to blame for global warming is being "very much disputed" and "debated."

Here's the exchange, at around the 15 minute mark of the interview on WTIF radio:

QUESTIONER: I have a question about global warming and what Toomey's position is on that and what he believes is going on there.

TOOMEY: My view is, I think the data is pretty clear. There has been an increase in the surface temperature of the planet over the course of the last 100 years or so. I think it's clear that that has happened. The extent to which that has been caused by human activity I think is not as clear. I think that is still very much disputed and has been debated. If we go down the road of legislation like this cap and trade bill...

Right, but who, exactly, is doing the disputing and the debating here?

Toomey's claim isn't as out there as some Tea Partyers who say flatly that there's no proof whatsoever that human activity has caused global warming. Toomey at least allows that this topic is up for debate. But Toomey's claim that this is "very much disputed" is sharply at odds with scientific consensus, which holds that human activity is primarily responsible for global warming.

Indeed, Toomey seems to be something of an agnostic on the core question of whether human activity is global warming's true culprit. That would put him at least partly in the company of O'Donnell, who recently said she doesn't have an opinion on whether global warming is created by human activity, or Angle, who recently dismissed that notion as a "mantra of the left" that's not backed up by "sound science."

Yet because O'Donnell and Angle have upped the crazy bar so high in so many other, more attention-grabbing ways, this sort of stuff from the relatively buttoned up Toomey passes unnoticed.

By Greg Sargent  | October 11, 2010; 2:28 PM ET
Categories:  2010 elections, Climate change, Senate Republicans, Tea Party  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Scarborough retracts false claim about lefty groups' disclosure. Will Rove and other righties do same?
Next: "Hicky" actor backs up GOP version of events

Comments

Just another extreme, way out-of-the-mainstream, neoconservatoad.

This guy's motto:

"Anything for Wall Street"

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 11, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

We still have to move to a sustainable clean energy supply, regardless of what is causing global warming. We can not continue to become more and more Dependant on foreign nations to provide our energy, and dirty air quality is not an acceptable alternative.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 11, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Want to know why the rest of the world mocks and hates us? Climate change denial is right up there. And we can thank the GOP's War On Science, which is produced by the Chamber of Commerce, which in turn is sponsored by the very fossil fuel industries that are causing global warming. Great American Patriots, one and all.

Posted by: wbgonne | October 11, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Greg

Let's be serious here

NEW YORK, Chicago and all of Connecticut used to be covered in ICE - ICE A QUARTER MILE THICK.

ALL that ice melted - without any SUVs, without ANY made-man carbon dioxide.


ALL OF IT.


So, clearly, there has been a warming period, completely FREE OF HUMAN ACTIVITY. In fact, scientists have identified 63 warming periods in Earth history. So, all of a sudden those causes are NOT happening now?

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 11, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Greg

Let's be serious here


STRF

Is STILL


A Quarter Mile

THICK!


And

OBAMA should be

MAN enough to

admit THAT!

Posted by: Liam-still | October 11, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA KNEW ABOUT THE FORGED DOCUMENTS USED BY BANKS IN FORECLOSURES


Numerous interest groups are coming out to recount how they warned Obama administration officials over the past year and a half of the problems in the foreclousure industry.


Obama knew all about it


AND Obama DID NOTHING.


In fact, the democrats in Congress were quietly passing a bill to let the banks off the hook with their notarizations.


Yea, the democrats pushed through that bill.


OBAMA KNEW - OBAMA WAS NOT DOING ANYTHING ABOUT THE BIG BANKS.


CHARGE MADE

OBAMA IS GUILTY.

.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 11, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

REPUBLICANS HATE AMERICA!!

If they did love America, they would be for stimulus that helps create jobs instead of just supporting the FAT CATS ON WALL STREET.

FACT!!!

There is NO DENYING this fact.

CASE CLOSED. Guilty as charged.

Did I tell you how much I HATE KITTENS?

I HATE THEM WITH A PASSION!

Kittens are smelly and ugly and eat and poop all day. THEN THEY MEOW TILL YOU HOLD THEM.

HOW INCONSIDERATE IS THAT?

Case closed. Fact.

OH. And CLINTON DESTROYED THIS COUNTRY.

How do I know? BECAUSE I SAID SO.

CASE CLOSED.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | October 11, 2010 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Oh. And how annoying are my rant?

RIDICULOUSLY ANNOYING! Do I care?

NO!

Why? Because I can rant here and WaPo WON'T DO A THING ABOUT IT BECAUSE THEY WANT ME TO HIT F5 ENDLESSLY to see if anyone RESPONDED TO MY endless RANTS.

It's also very DISRUPTIVE.

How do I know? BECAUSE BOTH CONSERVATIVES AND LIBERALS COMPLAIN.

I'm going to continue doing this UNTIL THEY BOOT ME.

Then, I'LL JUST CHANGE ACCOUNTS.

After all, I'M JUST AN OPPOSING voice, right?

RIGHT? CASE CLOSED!

Posted by: mikefromArlington | October 11, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

@mike
That was cute. I think the fellow has been influenced by Beck's blackboard thing - sort of Power Point for rednecks.

Posted by: bernielatham | October 11, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

"Climate change denial is right up there. And we can thank the GOP's War On Science, which is produced by the Chamber of Commerce, which in turn is sponsored by the very fossil fuel industries that are causing global warming. Great American Patriots, one and all."

If you don't mention the Koch brothers, you're not really trying.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | October 11, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

SaveTheRainforest:

I'm not sure if you saw my email address (you asked for it on a prior thread).

jaked382@gmail.com

Keep up the good fight!

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 11, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

"That was cute. I think the fellow has been influenced by Beck's blackboard thing - sort of Power Point for rednecks."

Personally, I just plow words into my cornfield. 
Is that propaganda?

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | October 11, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

let me add to this:
==========
If you don't mention the Koch brothers, you're not really trying.

==========

We can add any number of others to the list. I recall a website that generated liberal conspiracy theories. It was really funny.

I think global warming denial is a plot by highly placed Jews. Or maybe it is the same guys that did the 9/11 thing for Bush.

or maybe it is all because of halliburton. Yeah, that's the ticket.

what Mr Sargent illustrates here is how badly the left would like the entire notion of man caused global warming to be viewed as the mainstream point of view. Since environmentalists are really just another group of true believers they remain solidly convinced that their dogma explains it all, even as the major proponents of the theory are exposed as charlatans.

And I can understand why the left wants this so badly. Just imagine the ability to destroy America that comes along with their "in the interest of humanity" smarminess. Green on the outside, red on the inside. Command and control. pester the people while consuming their substance. yeah, that is today's liberals.

I wonder when Obama will visit a washboard factory in down town cleveland. Washboards will be the green technology of the future. We won't be able to afford to run the washing machine and the cost of the energy to dry?---out of the question! Washboards in cold water and the line drying. Buccholic splendor!

yeah that's the progress we see from the progressives alright.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 11, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

If you don't mention the Koch brothers, you're not really trying.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | October 11, 2010 3:23 PM |

.........

"Well, there you go again!" You mentioned them, so I am forced to admit that you are "really trying".

Tea Party Members. Naive Patriots or Gullible Koch-Suckers?

We report, you decide, I deride!

Posted by: Liam-still | October 11, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

For those who support what the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is doing:

https://secure.uschamber.com/join/business/donate.htm?n=t

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 11, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

"Tea Party Members. Naive Patriots or Gullible Koch-Suckers?"

Ask that DINO Feingold. He's claiming the mantle. How long has he been sucking Koch?

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1010/43354.html

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | October 11, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Skip,

Have you ever driven a Toyota Prius?

They're great.

I've driven one. Driving in hilly countryside, on a highway, I averaged over 58 mpg. I traveled about 450 miles on less than a tank of gas. And the tank only holds 10 gallons.

I did some calculations and I figured that over the lifetime of the car I would save about $15,000 and use thousands of gallons LESS of gasoline.

But you hate green technology, so, well, I guess you just PREFER to spend the extra money. Suit yourself!

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 11, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

skip,

Koch industries openly supports anti AGW efforts.

There is zero conspiracy there.

I know it would be easier for conservatives to write off the idea of the ideas they support being because they are truly free enterprise pro business pro American and not just some effort by a bunch of wealthy businessmen to muddy the waters of scientific conclusions to further their wealth.

Koch fund Mercatus/KATO/Americans for Prosperity, numerous anti-climate legislation efforst across the U.S.

Only an illiterate would believe otherwise. Or just a lazy person.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | October 11, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

All, the "hicky" actor in the GOP ad backs up the NRSC's version of events:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/10/hicky_actor_backs_up_gop_versi.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | October 11, 2010 4:00 PM | Report abuse

TrollMcWN, If I may use your first name;

You ducked my question, with the old ploy of answering with a question.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 11, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

My question is as sincere as yours.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | October 11, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Troll, My Amigo,

I never said it wasn't. I merely pointed out, that I asked the first question.

To paraphrase John McCain:

My fellow Americans, , today we are all Koch-Suckers. The Gang Of Five Supreme Court Right Wing Activists have thus decreed!

Posted by: Liam-still | October 11, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

how nice for you ethan. No doubt you feel great and righteous too driving that car.

but tell me, how free am I if congress can decide what kind of light bulb I MUST use? Or how many gallons of water my toilet uses to do its duty? Or what food I can eat? Or how many gallons of water my shower head emits?

And on and on and on.

We cannot get good fruit from a bad tree and the environmental movement is the classic bad tree. Two of its top proponents are proven charlatans. The emails from the GRU were devastating proof that the "academicians" were engaged in politics NOT science. And now we hear of scientists and academicians who aren't buying the man made global warming theme.

I'm certainly not. I see no reason for Americans to abandon their freedom so that the EPA can tell us how to live our lives.

the cap and trade vote should cost some Democrats their jobs in congress. I hope so.

and tell me, whence the billions that the enviro scare industry spends each year? Who supports groups like the Sierra club? or the "natural resources defense council"? Are you saying that no wealthy people donate to the greenies. I find that hard to credit.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 11, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Global warming is not only happening, it is dwarfing the cooling trend that is caused by oscillations in the Earth's orbit that were the cause of ice ages. Global warming is real and human-caused. Watch for these benchmarks: 400 ppm CO2 and an ice-free Arctic in summer by 2016. There will be a further average temperature increase of about 2 degrtees F by then, added to what has already occurred. Perhaps by then the deniers will decide it's time to learn some science.

The Earth in undeniably warming--how else to account for the Arctic ice being so low this year, lowest in volume, with surface extent not increasing as it did in 2009. And the 17 countries with record high temperatures. And on and on. Regardless of the cause, we ought to try to mitigate this increase, because a few degrees more average will mean many more very hot days, with changes in crops etc. Denial serves no one in th3e medium to long term.

Posted by: Mimikatz | October 11, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Jeffe,

I merely referred you to a person more able than I to answer your question. Because I thought you offered an incomplete choice, I didn't want to insult you with an incomplete answer. I don't think that Feingold would be capable of such. 

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | October 11, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

so are you saying that because of man the earth is no longer "oscillating"? how did we manage that?

if we've had so many ice ages before, what species ended them? If no species of animal ended the ice ages of the past, why did the end at all?

what credible evidence is there that if Americans face skyrocketing utility costs the pace of change on the planet will slow?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 11, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

mikefromArlington 3:23 PM


Mike - it's just a blog - you need to get a hold of yourself

I think St. Elizabeth is closed - but you need to check in somewhere - you really do.


And stay off the internet for a while - you can't handle it. You need a long, long rest. I suggest you rest until after the election.


.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 11, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

If we do the right thing, and develop clean sustainable energy supplies, we will have done the right thing, under either scenario. If our emissions are causing global warming, then we will have taken the right steps to stop feeding the problem. If it turns out, that we were not causing global warming; we still will be better off from having developed a clean dependable domestic supply of energy.

If we do what the opponents of a sane energy policy want, and they turn out to be wrong, then we will have made the planet inhospitable for much of humanity. If we do what they want, and they turn out to be right on the causes of global warming, we still will be stuck with dirty air, and competing for an every dwindling global supply of Oil and Gas, with China and India consuming more and more of them.

Forget about global warming. Do the right thing, from a clean dependable supply of domestic energy perspective, and we will still be doing the right thing for the future of this country.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 11, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

"how free am I if congress can decide what kind of light bulb I MUST use? Or how many gallons of water my toilet uses to do its duty? Or what food I can eat? Or how many gallons of water my shower head emits?"

Seeing as how, obviously, none of those things will ever happen, doesn't that kinda ruin your argument?

Seeing as how CFL and LED bulbs save money and save energy versus the incandescent bulbs you cling to needlessly, I guess there's my answer...

As with your outright rejection of hybrid cars, the fact is that you DO prefer spending the extra money on gas and energy!

Again, suit yourself!

Hilarious.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 11, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Greg

Several people have crossed the line into ad hominem attacks.

It about time the hostility was addressed


If you are going to send letters out, the rules should be applied equally.

.

Posted by: SaveTheRainforest | October 11, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

nonsense ethan.

the city of New York Banned transfats. Don't recall that? It was in 2006 Ethan. Where were you?

the federal government did indeed ban the edison style lightbulb. It will no longer be available for sale in 2014. Don't recall that? "Many of these state efforts became moot when the federal government enacted the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 in December 2007, requiring all general-purpose light bulbs that produce 310–2600 lumens of light [7] be 30% more energy efficient (similar to current halogen lamps) than current incandescent bulbs by 2012 to 2014. The efficiency standards will start with 100-watt bulbs in January 2012 and end with 40-watt bulbs in January 2014."

the amount of water a toilet can use in flushing was set by 1995 the "National Energy Policy Act (H.R. 776) went into effect and mandated 1.6 toilets for the entire U.S"

showerheads Ethan? Here ya go: "Back in early 1994, under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) of 1975, all showerheads manufactured in the U.S. could have a maximum flow no greater than 2.5 gallons per minute (gpm) at 80 psi. "

ALL of those things have already happened Ethan. And more are on the way.

it is one thing to wax righteous about the car you drive. It is another to watch our freedoms taken from us in the name of a hoax.

I never rejected your car ethan. Just like RUK and Liam-still you seem to see words that just aren't there. I'm no fan of hybrids but as long a you are free to buy the car you want and I am too, I have no argument with them either. Please do try to read more carefully.

so our freedom is under assault in the name of global warming or some such hooey. the assault is relentless and we must fight back.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 11, 2010 5:05 PM | Report abuse

That's right folks;

The EPA is waging A Dirty War On Skippy! Fairly soon now, they are going to lower one of those Simpson Movie domes over him.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 11, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

"so our freedom is under assault in the name of global warming or some such hooey. the assault is relentless and we must fight back."

Omg, hilarious.

I see. I guess you favor inefficiency and waste... and you call that "your freedom".

I understand now.

Well, keep fighting, Skip. Maybe someday you'll be able to take a shower at more than 2.5 gallons per minute while eating trans-fat laden potato chips! KEEP FIGHTING FOR YOUR FREEDOM SKIP, KEEP FIGHTING! If you fight hard enough maybe we can even go back to mud huts and candles! That's the life! The life of freedom!

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 11, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

In politics, "everything" is about the present and attaining/maintaining power. Climate change is like cancer in that the effects are too far in the future.

It is too late, anyway, so why bother. Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow you shall die. Carpe diem, and all that.

Posted by: dozas | October 11, 2010 5:21 PM | Report abuse

no boys, I favor FREEDOM. As long as the rules that come along favor your position, you have no problems, right? What happens when they don't guys?

Ethan it seems you didn't even know about the laws I mentioned. That's hardly surprising. It is said that ignorance is bliss Ethan. So bliss out out son. You life is being ordered by folks inDC and you didn't even know it.

The point isn't whether I favor efficiency or not the point is that the government is mandating how we live our lives. And for what? A hoax.

Liam still you showed us what a small minded little person you are last week. I'm unimpressed, at best. Get back to me when you've successfully navigated all the way through puberty, OK?

Posted by: skipsailing28 | October 11, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Commandant Skippy. Founder and Fearless Leader Of The Shower Head Liberation Army.

Today The Shower Stall;
Tomorrow The Whirlpool.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 11, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

"Ethan it seems you didn't even know about the laws I mentioned."

Hahaha! I knew about them there Skip. It is utterly asinine to suggest that those industry regulations impinge upon your freedom.

While you're at it, why don't you protest the fact that cars are mandated to have seatbelts? Because the federal government has TAKEN AWAY YOUR FREEDOM to own a car that doesn't have seat belts installed!

WHAT ABOUT YOUR FREEDOMS SKIPPY?

WHAT ABOUT YOUR FREEEEEDOMMMSSSSS!??!?!?!

Holy Christ, Skip, get real for once.

Don't you see that you're being ridiculous?

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 11, 2010 6:02 PM | Report abuse

The Can Kill Us, But The Can Never Take Away Our Shower Head FREEDOMS!

William Skippy Wallace.

Posted by: Liam-still | October 11, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Top US scientist Hal Lewis resigned this week from his post at the University of California at Santa Barbara. He admitted global warming climate change was nothing but a scam in his resignation letter.
From the Telegraph (because for some reason the Liberal Media here in the U.S don’t like this stuff getting out).

Posted by: yolo40 | October 12, 2010 5:22 AM | Report abuse

Top US scientist Hal Lewis resigned this week from his post at the University of California at Santa Barbara. He admitted global warming climate change was nothing but a scam in his resignation letter.
From the Telegraph (because for some reason the Liberal Media here in the U.S don’t like this stuff getting out).

Posted by: yolo40 | October 12, 2010 5:23 AM | Report abuse

What a blatant slanted piece of garbage by Mr. Sargent. Surprising?, not one bit as the MSM continues it's assault on any and all things conservative. People are finally waking up to your tactics WAPO.

Posted by: thebink | October 12, 2010 7:49 AM | Report abuse

I was a little curious about this Hal Lewis guy... WOW, what a crackpot.

Check out a thorough annihilation of Lewis' fact-free resignation letter:

http://climateprogress.org/2010/10/11/hal-lewis-resigns-from-the-american-physical-society/

Posted by: Ethan2010 | October 12, 2010 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company