Perry's global warming position hurts GOP, Huntsman says
August 20th, 2011
05:28 PM ET
12 years ago

Perry's global warming position hurts GOP, Huntsman says

Rock Hill, South Carolina (CNN) –Presidential candidate Rick Perry stood by his belief Saturday that manmade global warming is an unproven scientific theory while another White House contender is warning that the mindset puts the Republican Party in a "losing position" in 2012.

Former Utah governor and U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman, who is trailing top tier candidates in most national polls, openly criticized Perry's position on Twitter this week. He stressed the potential impact on the party in a taped interview that airs Sunday.

"The minute that the Republican Party becomes the party–the anti-science party–we have a huge problem. We lose a whole lot of people who would otherwise allow us to win the election in 2012," Huntsman said on ABC's "This Week."

Perry defended his position Saturday as he was wrapping up a two-day bus tour in South Carolina.

"I just happen to believe that the earth's temperature has been moving up and down for millenniums now, and there are enough scientists that happen to be skeptical about the reasons for it and I happen to be one of those that are skeptical," the Texas governor told reporters. "For us to spend billions of dollars on a theory that is not proven and that you have skeptical science against that is not in America's best interest."

In the interview, Huntsman said taking a position like Perry's "that basically runs counter to what 98 of 100 climate scientists have said, what the National Academy of Sciences has said about what is causing climate change and man's contribution to it, I think we find ourselves on the wrong side of science and, therefore, in a losing position."

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney waded into the debate in June, saying he believes global warming is occurring and humans are contributing to it.

The debate raises Huntsman's profile in a crowded presidential field and allows him to highlight what some might call his appeal to moderates and independents that Republicans need in order to win against President Barack Obama in the general election.

Huntsman was also quick to jump on reports that Perry told a New Hampshire woman that evolution is a theory that's "got some gaps in it."

"To be clear. I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming."

"Call me crazy," Huntsman tweeted Thursday.

Filed under: 2012 • Global Warming • Jon Huntsman • Rick Perry
soundoff (67 Responses)
  1. Alex in Bremerton, WA

    Whether man-caused or not, wouldn't cleaner air and water be a good thing to strive for. I'm not saying crash the economy by cutting off the oil spigot, but the US Army is setting a good example of local green energy in remote areas to reduce the cost and casualties of running fuel convoys. I read a recent article that stated 1 in 8 of our casualties occurred running fuel convoys.

    August 20, 2011 11:31 pm at 11:31 pm |
  2. J.V.hodgson

    Mr Perry has been a candidate for 1 week and already he has his foot in his big mouth several times. Sooner or later he is going to say Muslims do not believe in god, that E=mc 2 is jewish fallacy and that earth is flat, and Texas is the middle kingdom from which all rulers of America come. The chinese might disagree middle kingdom wise, and he would not have the faintest clue why. And this guy is a worthy presidential candidate? He is just excessively rude, arrogant and quite ignorant of anything that does not match his view... this is how you get stalemate in Congress.

    August 20, 2011 11:43 pm at 11:43 pm |
  3. Pennypincher

    I can not believe the enthusiasm for Perry – is it only by evangelicals, the type who's prophet was recently jailed.
    So far so bad, the guy is just another Palin, or ODonnel, or one of those Joe the Plumber, making a fool of himself and feeling good about it
    His state is in a sorry state. Their education just about last in the nation, its infrastructure also tailing, its morals in dispute with most single mothers in the nation. And the job creation, that was by God, it is for the natural gas and oil He gave them, and this evangelical denies it, claims to profit from it, and for the masses of retirees entering the state for its warm weather, did he create the warm weather? What a farce. And the masses of military deployed to its basis, what about the turn around after his party's wars are over. And the massive deficit he is leaving as a legacy, it is coming, he is trying to avoid it by running for president and shift the blame.
    Not my kind of man thank you

    August 21, 2011 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  4. Rev Mike

    A GOP candidate who make since? The Tea Party will get rid of him in a hurry!

    August 21, 2011 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  5. Jonathan

    Thank you, Jon Huntsman, for finally addressing the elephant in the GOP's room. I am an independent, and I have told people many times over the years that I refuse to vote for anyone who doesn't believe in man-made climate change and evolution. One issue, evolution, is a scientific fact that the rest of the world has no problem accepting. The second issue, climate change, has mountains of proof that the GOP has ignored for decades. Richard Nixon started the Clean Air Act and several other pro-environment bills during his presidency, and the GOP has denied them ever since. Most likely because they own the oil, logging, and other corporations that would be affected by legislation.

    Again, thank you for saying what needs to be said. There is now officially one Republican I would be willing to vote for. Too bad the rest of his party is still in the dark. If Rick Perry wins, I am moving out of the country. He is anti-science and scares me to death.

    August 21, 2011 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  6. Wulf

    WOW, a GOP candidate with some common sense! If the GOP would back someone with a bit of common sense and middle ground it'd go along way with non-extreme voters and people with educated backgrounds. He is right on about the GOP becoming the anti-science party, and the effects it will have on that party.

    August 21, 2011 12:42 am at 12:42 am |
  7. Set

    It is nice to see that not all republicans are ignorant. Perry like many Tea Party followers are nothing more than a bunch of radicals, who only differ to those detained at Guantanamo in that they have yet to get organized and commit some act of terrorism in the name of God.
    However as a scientist i fully support Perry and his idiotic beliefs as i would love nothing more than to see first hand, how ignorance and stupidity topples one of the most powerful nations. Bush was pretty close to doing so. Please vote for Perry and Palin, the best possible social experiment.

    August 21, 2011 01:14 am at 1:14 am |
  8. LNB

    Obama all the way, but...."if I were a rich man"....I'd vote Huntsman.

    August 21, 2011 01:35 am at 1:35 am |
  9. me

    Too bad centrists won't win the republican primary in the for seeable future.

    August 21, 2011 01:53 am at 1:53 am |
  10. Charlie Wyatt

    I think Perry is on a winner, anyone with a brain in their head knows that the Global Warming scam is nothing but a tax on fresh air! Just a shame that Texas is still executing people.

    August 21, 2011 01:57 am at 1:57 am |
  11. Kevin

    OMG..... Republicans who can actual think?????? What is the world coming to?

    August 21, 2011 02:49 am at 2:49 am |
  12. Jon

    Put's himself in the same category as scientists, this is good stuff. Be a good comedy anyway. Knowledge? The guy's got a bachelor's degree in animal science with an entire 2.22 GPA. My 12 year old is smarter.
    Can you imagine Rick Perry eating the dingleberrys out of my crack? Cause that's the only job he is qualified for. Now you know, and knowing is half the battle.

    August 21, 2011 03:04 am at 3:04 am |
  13. Brian Dodge

    Perry's not only wrong about global warming and evolution, his statement that they teach creationism in Texas schools is a blatant lie. The only question is whether he's so stupid he actually believes the crap he's spouting, or he's knowingly lying to appeal to the Tea Party wingnuts.

    August 21, 2011 04:02 am at 4:02 am |

    He is realistic so he will be called a RINO by the teabaggers. Teabaggers want to hear lies like two dollar gas to support what they hear on Fox and Rush Limbaugh. Rick Bush feeds them whenever his mouth moves so they just love him.

    August 21, 2011 05:14 am at 5:14 am |
  15. ST

    Huntsman, you are doing a very superb job. Very brave of you! We all love you!

    August 21, 2011 07:28 am at 7:28 am |
  16. Liz the First

    Wow! one republican with a grasp on reality. they'll crucify him. LOL! repubs value ignorance over education and intelligence because it's far easier to get ignorant, stupid (and no, ignorance and stupidity aren't the same thing) people to buy their line of BS about improving poor people's lives by making the rich even richer. if that nonsense worked, we should be living in a country with ZERO unemployment. if we'd elected Gore, oh, wait, WE DID, climate change would have been taken on instead of denied and allowed to run rampant. denying you have a problem doens't make it go away, it just makes you look stupid.

    August 21, 2011 08:03 am at 8:03 am |
  17. Clwyd

    Huntsman is right about the Anti-Science Party (The anti-middle class Party, the anti-worker party, the pro-war party, the save the loopholes party, the party for the millionaires and billionaires Party) and the leader of the conservative move to try to disprove global warming. Unless I'm wrong 93% of environmental scientist now say global warming is real so that when Perry says, "there are enough scientists who do not believe in global warming" he is referring to the mere 7% who agree with him! Stupid is forever and that is the cry of the Republican Party. Ignorance also is forever!

    August 21, 2011 08:13 am at 8:13 am |
1 2 3