Sarah Palin Flip-Flops on Climate Change

When the announcement of John McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin was made there were concerns that she was a firm member of the flat-earth contingent of the Republican Party, with Palin being on record for both supporting the teaching of creationism in public schools and for denying the scientific consensus on climate change. Sarah Palin has no beliefs which are so firm that she is not willing to change them to echo those of John McCain, which at least is an improvement on global warming.

During her interview with Charles Gibson Palin said:

Show me where I have ever said that there’s absolute proof that nothing that man has ever conducted or engaged in has had any effect or no effect on climate change. I have not said that.

Actually she has expressed disbelief in this. In an interview with Newsmax on August 28, 2008 Palin said:

A changing environment will affect Alaska more than any other state, because of our location. I’m not one though who would attribute it to being man-made.

In an interview with a Fairbanks newspaper last year she said:

I’m not an Al Gore, doom-and-gloom environmentalist blaming the changes in our climate on human activity.

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  1. 1
    Don says:

    I appreciate your work on following Gov. Palin’s changing set of beliefs, but you’re going to have a lot of work it seems.

  2. 2
    battlebob says:

    Typical Repun nonsense.
    McBush and company lie thru their teeth knowing the truth will catch up to them too late to affect anything.
    The good thing is the last lie is catching up to them as the next lie is being uttered.

    Even the press has had it with their story telling.

  3. 3
    Mark says:

    I tend to think you’re missing an important, if subtle, difference in her statements.  In the first statement she’s acknowledging that she lacks “absolute proof” for the assertion that climate change is not man-made.  In the latter statements (one of which is not from a particularly credible source, i.e., Newsmax), she is stating that she does not personally believe global warming is man-made.  One need not have “absolute proof” to believe something; this is particularly true in the case of global warming, where the initial burden of proof is inherently on those advocating that global warming is anthropogenic (one cannot be asked to prove a negative as an initial burden).  I read her statements as saying simply that she doesn’t think global warming science has met that burden.  While I personally may disagree with her on this point, I don’t think her statements are necessarily inconsistent.   Instead, they suggest someone who has a position, but is willing to accept the possibility that her position may be wrong. 

    It’s obviously not something that’s going to get me to vote for McCain-Palin, but this apparent doubt in her mind is, to me, an inherently positive trait- I’m not a fan of politicians that speak in absolutes.

  4. 4
    Ron Chusid says:


    I saw the use of “absolute proof” more as an attempt to distract from how she is changing what she is saying. The real issue isn’t one of absolute proof but that previously she denied climate change and now she is changing her stated belief to match McCain’s.

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