Update: CNN's Jake Tapper along with conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt will moderate the next GOP Presidential debate in two weeks. Click here to demand Jake and Hugh tap the climate so we get answers about our next president's climate agenda.
The stage is set for the quadrennial Republican Presidential sweepstakes, but the fate of our climate in that debate is still very much unsettled. CNN recently announced that Jake Tapper will feature questions from conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt.1
Hewitt himself has remained relatively silent on the subject of climate disruption -- but he lets his guests spew plenty of climate denial. He recently hosted conservative columnist Mark Steyn, who blasted President Obama for telling United States Coast Guard graduates that climate disruption is a national security threat.2 I think it's safe to say that we can't count on Mr. Hewitt to discuss humanity's gravest challenge. So the question remains: What's It Gonna Take To Make Jake Not Flake On Our Climate?
The answer is simple -- it's going to take members like you to take action by letting Jake Tapper and CNN know that if they don't tap climate change, we're going to change the channel on them, permanently. Click here to demand Tapper and ALL future moderators ask candidates how they plan to act on climate.
It's ironic that the next debate is taking place in California, which is arguably ground zero for climate fueled catastrophe. From massive droughts, to wildfires, to dangerous emissions that threaten the health of citizens daily, California has seen the worst of climate chaos. You might think Tapper could have an entire debate on climate disruption. But after last month's debacle on Fox, I am not holding my breath or taking anything for granted.
Just yesterday in Alaska, President Obama called out leaders who deny climate change, saying "any leader who refuses to take this issue seriously or treats it like a joke, is not fit to lead."3 According to recent polls, the top two contenders for the GOP nomination are Donald Trump and Dr. Benjamin Carson. Trump says climate disruption is a hoax developed by China to thwart U.S. production. Carson has said he believes that we have a right to control our environment as we see fit.4 If there's one thing these two 'front runners' need, it's some tough questions on the status of our climate, and action they will take to save it.
The next president can dismantle President Obama's entire climate legacy including the Clean Power Plan and any agreements he makes in Paris this December. Or s/he can lead us toward a cleaner future where we leave fossil fuels in the ground and build a clean energy economy for all by 2050. We deserve to know where the next "Leader of the Free World" stands on the greatest issue facing our planet. We need to know if they pass Obama's fitness test, and how they will act on climate.
But we won't get the information we need if our "trusted" moderators don't ask the questions voters need answers to before heading to the polls. It's up to us to take action and make Operation Climate Conversation as much of a reality as climate change. Click here to demand news networks put global warming front and center in future debates.
Thanks for sounding off,
Anthony and the Climate Conversational team at Environmental Action
1. Gold, Hadas. 16 GOP Candidates Invited To GOP Debate. Politico August 11, 2015.
2. Weaver, Al. Steyn to Obama: Forget About Climate Change Refugees, What About Syrian Refugees? The Daily Caller. May 21, 2015.
3. Parkinson, Giles. Obama Says Leaders Not Taking Climate Change Seriously "Not Fit To Lead." Renew Economy. September 1, 2015.
4. Kaplan, Rebecca and Uchimiya, Ellen. Where The 2016 Republican Candidates Stand On Climate Change. CBS News. September 1, 2015.