In a series of resolutions introduced in the Senate, Democrats have used the debate over the Keystone pipeline to get Republicans to go on record on their views on climate change. Remarkably, practically all Senate Republicans are willing to acknowledge that climate change is actually happening, that it isn’t a hoax. (The holdout: Mississippi’s Sen. Roger Wicker.) It’s the causes and consequences of climate change that Republicans have trouble with. A couple of resolutions stating that climate change was real, human-caused and potentially devastating in its consequences failed in the Senate.
Persisting, Democrat Brian Schatz of Hawaii introduced an amendment simply stating that climate change was in significant degree caused by human activity. The amendment passed by a vote of 50 to 49, but the partisan breakdown of the vote is worth noting. Democrats voted unanimously to accept the overwhelming scientific consensus on climate change. Republicans voted no, 49 to 5.
I don’t know if there is any other major political party in the world that is so stubbornly delusional on a major global issue, but I doubt it.
Update: Of course, I misstated when I said “…the amendment passed by a vote of 50-49…” It would have been more accurate to say that a majority of senators supported the amendment, but thanks to the filibuster majority rule is not the rule in the US Senate.