An issue that will benefit Republicans is job creation and climate and energy development. The fear of climate change has paralyzed the national debate on energy. Despite years of being told climate change is man’s fault, many voters are not sold on this idea. In 2011, Americas Majority Foundation did two surveys which included questions on climate change. These polls show the vast majority of voters believe climate change is natural. Alternatively, they believe it is caused by human activity combined with natural events.
In a study contrasting the investor with the non-investor class, minority investors believed 50% of climate change was caused by natural events combined with human activity. Another 32% say, it is natural events. Even among the minority non-investor class, 40% believe in a combination of natural events and humans. Thirty One percent believe it was natural events. That being said, 82% of minority investors and 86% of white investors believe it is either natural or a combination of both. While 71% of minority and 81% of white non-investors agree climate change is either natural or combined with human events. Hence, the vast majority of voters, including minorities, accept the position of the climate skeptics. Fifty-two percent to 66% of voters also agree climate happened in the past. Accordingly, we shouldn’t alter our life style.
In our national poll conducted in August of 2014, 75% of Hispanics still believe it is either a combination of natural and human involvement or simply natural. Sixty-eight percent of New Mexico Hispanics, nearly 68% of Wisconsin Hispanics and 62% of Illinois Hispanics, still accept the climate realist position that natural events, either alone or in combination with humans, are responsible.
In our post election national polls, voters continue to reject the climate alarmist view that human activity is primary. In our Voice Broadcasting poll, 24% state human activity was the primary reason for climate change. But, 43% state it was natural causes combined with human activity. And, another 25% said it was natural causes. This shows voters accept the arguments of climate skeptics. Climate skeptics argue climate change is caused by natural events. But, many skeptics also view that human activity could play a role combined with natural events.
Ten percent of Republicans, 25% of Independents and 35% of Democrats accept the alarmist arguments. Fifty-five percent of Democrats, 79% of Republicans and 67% of Independents accept the skeptic argument about climate change. i.e. It is caused, either by a combination of human and natural events, or natural events only. Twenty four percent of white voters, 21% of blacks, 18% Hispanics and 35% of Asians favored Climate alarmist arguments. Whereas 78% of White, 62% of Black, 66% of Hispanics and 56% of Asians favored the skeptic arguments.
In a Cyngal poll, 29% of voters believe in the alarmist argument that human activity is the driving force behind climate change. Whereas, 21% of voters bought into the argument of natural events as the driving force behind climate change. Another 46% believe it is a combination of human activities and natural events.
Their second poll showed that voters have rejected the alarmist arguments. Forty-three percent of Democrats accept the alarmist argument that human activity is driving climate change. But, 54% accepted the skeptic arguments. Republicans are more accepting of the skeptics by a margin of 81% to 14%. A full 67% of Independents reject the alarmist argument of human activity. Only 25% accept it. Therefore, when voters are given scientific arguments from both skeptics and alarmists, they overwhelmingly reject alarmists. We have consistently seen these numbers since 2011. So, this is not an isolated poll, but a response from thousands of voters over a five year period.
When asked in past polls, whether we should deal with climate change or emphasize job creation, 73% of Whites, 77% of Blacks and 74% of Hispanics state they want job creation emphasized. Seventy-five to 78% of whites, Hispanics and black voters in our national poll stated it was job creation first before dealing with climate and energy.
The 2016 Election and Climate and Energy
In our 2016 post-election polls, we found division. We asked voters whether energy policy should emphasize expansive energy development and economic growth, or consider climate change as part of any energy policy. In a Voice Broadcasting poll, 48% stated economic growth takes precedence. However, 36% say climate change should be considered. The rest are unsure. In our second poll, 37% stated economic growth should be primary. Forty-four percent 44% view climate change should take precedence.
In both polls, Republicans favored economic growth whereas Democrats favored energy policies should take climate change into consideration. The difference was independents. Where one poll found they favored energy expansion, the other showed they believe climate change must be considered. In the one national poll, White, Black, Hispanic and Asians all favored economic growth. However, in the second poll, White, Black, Hispanic and Asians favored a consideration of climate change.
The good news here is that these numbers are in spite of the media coverage of only one side – that humanity is responsible for climate change. When asked in 2011, have you heard of Climategate, 67 to 75% of black, white and Hispanic voters said no. Climategate is the scandal where many alarmists admit much of their data was methodology flawed. This question told us that many Americans were not aware of the major debate within the scientific community. Much of the media ignored the story while continuously stating the climate alarmist position.
It is a miracle many voters reject the alarmist theories. They simply reacted to the common sense approach that natural events are part of climate change. Americans may tell a pollster, “Yeah this is an important issue.” But, many Americans, including minorities, believe job creation should prioritize. (When you view both polls, you will see that while there is a division about how to craft energy policy, there is no doubt that a high number of Americans want more energy. Donald Trump’s skeptical view on climate change did not hurt him in this election. In states like West Virginia and Pennsylvania, being pro-energy is being pro-job). Republicans and conservatives can make the Skeptics argument, knowing many voters will accept them. There are thousands studies which support the skeptics. There are many polls, including our own, where economic growth is the primary.
Voters have responded to growth oriented arguments in general. So, the best case Republicans and conservatives can make is that expansive energy development means cheaper energy. And, cheaper energy gives American companies a reason to stay in the United States combined with business friendly tax policies.
(Americas Majority Foundation, which I work with, polled some 45,000 voters in seven battleground states. We have also conducted two national polls. This article is based upon our results).