While you were snoozing last week, a group of Democratic senators were at work on the Senate floor. Senator Brian Schatz said:
We have a simple message for all Americans: We’re not going to rest until Congress acts on the most pressing issue of our time.
A lack of jobs? Americans losing their health insurance? The deficit? Which of these issues did Schatz and his 30 cohorts stay up all night to debate and demand action on?
Climate change. That is right, with Americans dropping out of the workforce in record numbers and cancer patients unable to see their doctors, our leaders are taking turns talking on the floor about global warming. And according to a spokesman from Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse’s office, this is not the last time that we will hear from the Senate Climate Action Task Force.
This is just a desperate attempt to appeal to their donor base and bring a non-issue to the forefront to distract from Obamacare, a weak president, and an ailing economy. The war on women was last election season’s non-sequitur (and no doubt it will be in full-swing again come this November), and we’ve already heard from the President and other members of Congress this year that we need to make addressing climate change a major priority.
But while the Democrats may want to hang their 2014 hat on global warming, climate change is, to voters, a relative non-issue. See this Pew poll from January: of a whopping 20 issues tested as policy priorities, the American public put global warming in 19th place, above only global trade issues. This is not some sort of statistical abnormality — global warming is routinely found at the bottom of the list.
Fun fact: Anthony Watts pointed out that the Senators conducted their talkathon from the warm and cozy Senate floor, courtesy of the Capitol’s coal-fired power plant.