Katie LaPotin, Red Alert Politics, May 30, 2013
President Obama announced Wednesday that he’s willing to work with Republicans on environmental issues, but that he doesn’t have ”much patience” for climate change deniers.
Obama made the remarks during his two fundraisers for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee in Chicago.
“If I’ve got somebody who has a different approach to dealing with climate change — I don’t have much patience for people who deny climate change, but if you’ve got creative approaches, market-based approaches, tell me about them,” Obama said. “If you think I’m doing it the wrong way, let me know. I’m happy to work with you.”
Referencing climate change in both of his speeches, Obama noted that he plans to make America a “net exporter of national gas” by 2020 and that energy production is what runs the country’s economy.
“So the good news is that the United States of America is better positioned than any country on Earth to make sure that the 21st century remains our century, just like the 20th was,” he said. “And a world city like Chicago is better positioned than just about anybody. Look at the assets that are here. We got the best universities. We’ve got the most dynamic entrepreneurs. We’ve got everything we need to succeed.”
He later added that the earth’s climate is changing in unpredictable ways, however, and that it’s investments in green energy that will make the world a better place for future generations.
“But the flipside is we also know that the climate is warming faster than anybody anticipated five or 10 years ago, and that the future…in part, is going to depend on our willingness to deal with something that we may not be able to see or smell the way you could when the Chicago River was on fire, or at least could have caught on fire, but is in some ways more serious, more fundamental,” the president stated.
Obama unexpectedly brought up climate change and the environment in this year’s State of the Union address. During his speech, he vowed to take up the issue in his second term, even going so far as to direct his cabinet to come up with ways to “prepare our communities” for the effects of climate change.
“The good news is we can make meaningful progress on this issue while driving strong economic growth. I urge this Congress to pursue a bipartisan, market-based solution to climate change, like the one John McCain and Joe Lieberman worked on together a few years ago,” he said back in February. “But if Congress won’t act soon to protect future generations, I will. I will direct my Cabinet to come up with executive actions we can take, now and in the future, to reduce pollution, prepare our communities for the consequences of climate change, and speed the transition to more sustainable sources of energy.”