Tom Coburn Labels Himself a “Global Warming Denier”

Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla.
National Journal
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Alex Brown
Aug. 27, 2013, 10:22 a.m.

Tom Coburn doesn’t deny that he’s in deni­al. The Ok­lahoma Re­pub­lic­an sen­at­or — who has pre­vi­ously called glob­al warm­ing sci­ence “crap” — de­scribed him­self Monday in terms an en­vir­on­ment­al­ist might use. “I am a glob­al warm­ing den­ier,” Coburn said, ac­cord­ing to the Tulsa World. “I don’t deny that.”

Even with that self-labeled monik­er, Coburn is un­likely to be­come green act­iv­ists’ most hated Ok­laho­man in the up­per cham­ber. Sen. Jim In­hofe — who has re­peatedly said hu­man activ­ity does not cause cli­mate change — has long been the go-to ex­ample of GOP “sci­ence deni­al.” In 2012, Sen. Eliza­beth War­ren, D-Mass., used In­hofe to at­tack then-Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., not­ing that a GOP-con­trolled Sen­ate could put In­hofe in charge of the Sen­ate’s En­vir­on­ment and Pub­lic Works Com­mit­tee. More re­cently, en­vir­on­ment­al­ists lashed out as Google — which has built an en­vir­on­ment­ally con­scious repu­ta­tion — for host­ing a fun­draiser to be­ne­fit In­hofe.

So how does Coburn ex­plain cli­mate change? It’s a nat­ur­al phe­nomen­on, he said, and it’s cur­rently lead­ing to a “mini-ice age.”