Democrats Slam EPA's Pruitt for Carbon Dioxide Remarks
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt drew the ire of several top Democrats and climate change activists after he declared carbon dioxide was not the primary driver of climate change.
Speaking on CNBC's "Squawk Box," Pruitt said there is "tremendous disagreement" on the degree to which CO2 impacts the climate.
"I would not agree that it is a primary contributor to the global warming that we see," Pruitt said.
That remark sparked a firestorm of pushback from liberals on Twitter.
Senator Tom Udall (D-New Mexico) said Pruitt should not be spreading "alternative facts," a reference to a phrase Kellyanne Conway was criticized for using last month.
"The science on CO2 is clear," Udall said.
— Tom Udall (@SenatorTomUdall) March 9, 2017
Senate Minority Whip Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) likened Pruitt's remark to "denying gravity keeps our feet on the ground."
Denying CO2 is the primary contributor to global warming is like denying gravity keeps our feet on the ground—it goes against basic science https://t.co/U0kh2hwMGh
— Senator Dick Durbin (@SenatorDurbin) March 9, 2017
Hawaiian Senator Brain Schatz called Pruitt "nuts."
This is just nuts: EPA chief Scott Pruitt just claimed carbon not causing climate change. We Senate D's will be a check on his crazy views.
— Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) March 9, 2017
And, Sierra Club executive director Michael Brune demanded that Pruitt be removed from office for "contradicting science and law."
Pruitt misled Congress about his willingness to do a core part of his job. Contradicting science + law should mean removal from office now.
— Michael Brune (@bruneski) March 9, 2017
— Senator Jeff Merkley (@SenJeffMerkley) March 9, 2017
Let me weigh in: it is. https://t.co/pJLKpidOsi
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) March 9, 2017
Watch Pruitt's initial remarks below: