Washington, D.C. – In response to Marco Rubio’s answer to a question on his support for cap-and-trade and climate change during the 7th GOP debate on Fox News, LCV National Press Secretary Seth Stein issued the following statement:
“When asked about climate change by Fox News, Senator Rubio showed he has a weak relationship with the facts on the economic impact of tackling climate change, which will create jobs, grow the economy, and improve public health. He showed a better understanding of the issue in 2008 when he said that Florida should lead on climate and supported cap-and-trade. Now in 2016, the American people are making it increasingly clear they have little tolerance for candidates who willfully ignore the facts of climate change. The other news networks should follow Fox News’ lead, and finally ask the Republican candidates a question on climate change.”
Here’s the full exchange from tonight’s debate:
BRET BAIER: Senator Rubio, on the issue of climate change, in 2008, you wanted Florida to get ahead of other states and establish a cap- and-trade system, a program for carbon emissions, which many Republicans thought at the time would hurt the Florida economy. Now, you’re a skeptic of climate change science. And in fact, you warn that federal efforts to fight climate change will cost U.S. jobs and hurt the U.S. economy. So why the change?
SEN. RUBIO: Well, Bret, first that’s not entirely the story. At the time, the liberal governor of Florida, who claimed he was a Republican — his name was Charlie Crist — he wanted to impose cap-and-trade on Florida. And I opposed it. I was the first person out of the box that opposed him on it. And then we saw that the leading candidates for president at the time, both the Republican and the Democrats, all supported it. And what we said is, if they’re going to impose this on us, we better prepare to protect the state from it. But I have never supported cap- and-trade and I never thought it was a good idea. And I was clear about that at the time. And I do not believe it’s a good idea now. I do not believe that we have to destroy our economy in order to protect our environment. And especially what these programs are asking us to pass that will do nothing to help the environment, but will be devastating for our economy. When I am president of the United States of America, there will never be any cap-and-trade in the United States.
Paid for by the League of Conservation Voters, www.lcv.org, and not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.