Scott Wagner, the GOP candidate for governor in Pennsylvania, explains climate change by claiming that “the earth moves closer to the sun every year.”
Wagner, a former Republican state senator and current candidate for governor, was giving the keynote address at an event for natural gas advocates whe he suggested his novel and erroneous scientific theory concerning climate change.
According to State Impact, an NPR affiliate, Wagner said:
I haven’t been in a science class in a long time, but the earth moves closer to the sun every year – you know the rotation of the earth. We’re moving closer to the sun.
We have more people. You know, humans have warm bodies. So is heat coming off? Things are changing, but I think we are, as a society, doing the best we can.
For the record, Wagner is wrong. Politifact explains:
Pennsylvania Sen. Scott Wagner said during a discussion about climate change that “the earth moves closer to the sun every year — you know the rotation of the earth. We’re moving closer to the sun.”
The Earth technically does move closer to the sun every year as part of its revolution around the sun, but it then moves back. That revolution is not related to the rotation of the Earth, and as experts point out, the Earth isn’t on average moving closer to the sun. That movement closer to the sun, scientists say, wouldn’t have an impact on climate change, and one scientist even called the claim “ridiculous.” Also, there’s no evidence to suggest human body heat is at all related to global climate change.
We rate the claim False.
Adding insult to injury, after Wagner made his ridiculous claim, student Rose Strauss challenged Wagner’s absurd argument that climate change is being caused by human body heat. In response, Wagner called Strauss “young and naive” and stated that Pennsylvanians are trying to elect a governor, not a scientist.
Wagner’s callous and dismissive response set off yet another firestorm, with memes like this quickly circulating on social media:
GOP gubernatorial candidate Scott Wagner called a teen activist ‘young and naive’ for challenging his absurd claim that climate change is caused by human body heat pic.twitter.com/q0bUctB0Wh
— Che #VetsResist #idiotinchief (@voter_resister) July 20, 2018
And earlier this month, in yet another public relations disaster, Wagner said he wanted to stomp his opponent’s face with golf cleats.
The good news: Wagner is expected to lose to his Democratic opponent Tom Wolf in November.
Bottom line: Scott Wagner, the GOP candidate for governor in Pennsylvania, explains climate change by claiming that “the earth moves closer to the sun every year.”