On April 13, Florida's Junior Republican Senator Marco Rubio announced his candidacy for the 2016 presidency.
Speaking from his hometown of Miami, Rubio said,
I live in an exceptional country where the son of a bartender and a maid can have the same dreams and the same future as those who come from power and privilege.
Rubio comes from Cuban immigrant parents. His political career is marked by a rapid ascent through Florida politics, starting in the throes of a congressional internship and rising to become Florida's youngest state House speaker.
Despite Rubio's political leanings on a number of highly relevant issues facing both Americans and the US position on the world stage, his presidential announcement, in front of the Freedom Tower in Miami, came as a dark irony, given his denial of human-caused climate change and the dire consequences Miami may face if a president were to laze on climate legislation.
Last year, in a May 11 interview on ABC's "This Week," Rubio explicitly stated his opinions on climate change, saying,
I do not believe that human activity is causing these dramatic changes to our climate the way these scientists are portraying it.
And I do not believe that the laws that they propose we pass will do anything about it. Except it will destroy our economy.
The climate flip-flop
And we're back here yet again, where outright denial of a 97-percent scientific consensus on human-caused climate change is face-to-face with the Republican bandwagon of scientific denial.
Others riding this golden bandwagon include: Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee, Bobby Jindal, John Kasich, Rand Paul, Mike Pence, Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan, Rick Santorum and Scott Walker.
But Rubio, like many other ambitious Republicans, wasn't always so confident about his climate-denial expertise. Back in 2007, Rubio spoke to the Florida House of Representatives and promoted Florida's potential to be an international model for energy efficiency, using global warming as a reason to embrace these measures.
Two years later, Rubio slightly backtracked and clarified there's a scientific dispute about climate change. In 2010, he used Charlie Crist's belief in man-made global warming as an attack line.
Rubio's 2013 State of the Union response was “the government can't change the weather.”
And in 2014, well, refer to the "This Week" quote above.
Thus, it's no surprise EcoWatch writer Anastasia Pantsios called Rubio a “climate flip-flopper” earlier this month, referring to his presidential announcement.
Oodles of contradicting studies and research papers thoroughly detail the relationship between humans and planet Earth.
According to the United Nation's Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change, experts concluded “with 95 percent certainty that the human influence on the climate system is clear and is evident from the increasing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere, positive radiative forcing, observed warming and understanding of the climate system.”
With over 10,855 climate studies published in scientific journals in 2013, there were only two written rejecting a human-caused climate disruption.
What climate denial means
Speculation and head scratching has, undoubtedly, manifested in the wake of Rubio's presidential announcement.
Specifically, why is Rubio making these accusations?
Rubio is one of two presidential candidates of Latino descent, along with Rafael Edward (Ted) Cruz.
Therefore, with the growing power of the Latino vote, you'd image Rubio would be tasked with connecting to his cultural constituents as a man who understands the issues faced by Latinos in the US.
A 2014 poll conducted for the Natural Resources Defense Council by Latino Decisions showed strong, deep and widespread support among Latinos regarding the need for climate change legislation.
According to the survey, nine in 10 Latinos want the government to take action against the dangers of global warming and climate change.
Additionally, the survey showed 68 percent of Republican Latinos say it is important — including 46 percent of Republican Latinos who say it's very or extremely important — for our government to tackle global warming and climate change.
A 2015 Yale analysis showed, in Florida, approximately 56 percent of citizens stated climate change is partially human causation, with 42 percent saying climate change is not happening.
Perhaps Rubio is living in his high castle where the rising waters cannot reach him
Should we follow the money?
Between 2009 and 2014, Rubio's raised $30,554,421 in campaign funds. His top five contributors include: Club for Growth, Elliot Management, Senate Conservatives Fund, Goldman Sachs and McM Corp.
Some of Club for Growth's top policy goals, according to its website, include reducing the size and scope of the government and cutting government spending.
Founder of Elliot Management, Paul Singer, is also a significant donator to Bjørn Lomborg, a Danish climate science contrarian and fossil fuels advocate
The Senate Conservatives Fund is the “super PAC arm of the Senate Conservatives Action,” which is mostly pissed off about Obamacare.
So, there is some illumination of a politician crushed under bags of cash here.
Yet, regarding Rubio's stark comments on climate change, it seems he would more likely be a bedfellow of the Koch Brothers, who have only donated upwards of $37,200 to his campaign so far.
The Koch Brothers – those weeny, shadowy super villains with top hats and monocles – have sent at least $79,048,951 to groups denying climate change since 1997, according to Greenpeace.
It's extremely distasteful, however, to outright claim Rubio is looking for a piece of this golden egg, right?
What it will mean if we elect a president who denies climate change
Further stagnation on climate change policy because some politicians are these moronic bumbling cartoon characters with dollar bills for eyes means the sons and daughters of bartenders, maids and people from power and privilege – those same daughters and sons Rubio lauded in his presidential coming-out speech – won't have the same dreams and futures.
In short, a president who denies climate change will be bad for us, for future generations and for all species on earth.
This indirectly comes from the irrefutable 97-percent consensus regarding climate change and the libraries packed with climate research and the effects of pollution since the Industrial Revolution.
Or, maybe the answer to all of this is that Rubio has caught the contagion known as Climate Change Denial Disorder (CCDD), described in the following video:
Doesn't sound too promising, does it?
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Elite Daily
Citations: Marco Rubio Announces Presidential Bid (New York Times), Floridians seem a lot more worried about climate change than Marco Rubio is (Washington Post), The Issue That Could Derail Marco Rubiou2019s Presidential Chances With Latino Voters (Think Progress), Has Marco Rubio backtracked on climate change? (PolitiFact), Climate Flip-Flopper Marco Rubio Announces Presidential Candidacy (EcoWatch)