Vice President Mike Pence was on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday, and things got … heated. “Do you think human-induced climate emergency is a threat to the United States?” host Jake Tapper asked Pence. Over the course of the next two minutes, Pence used every ounce of creativity in his person to avoid giving a direct answer to that question.
First, Pence tried to argue that the U.S. is actually addressing the issue of climate change, even though the Trump administration’s Environmental Protection Agency rolled back Obama’s Clean Power Plan just last week. “We’re seeing a significant reduction in carbon emissions across this country,” Pence said, citing natural gas and clean coal as reasons for a dip in emissions. The U.S. actually saw a huge spike in C02 emissions last year, so I have no idea what the guy is talking about.
When Tapper pressed Pence for a real answer to his question, the vice president ducked it again. “I think the answer to that is going to be based upon the science,” he said. “I’m asking you what you think,” Tapper said. “Well, there’s many in the science that …” Pence half-heartedly said before Tapper cut him off again to point out that Trump’s own scientists have said rising temperatures pose a threat.
This continues on for another full minute. It is truly excruciating! Watch the clip to catch Pence try to claim that the U.S. has the “cleanest air and water in the world,” bash the Green New Deal, and argue that climate action raises utility rates for Americans.
Points to Tapper for trying to get Pence to answer the question, even though he was eventually forced to throw in the towel.
This story was originally published by Grist with the headline Watch this cringe-worthy clip of Vice President Mike Pence dodging a climate question on Jun 24, 2019.