Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump reacted to the cold front hitting New York City and the Northeast by repeating his disbelief in climate change, tweeting Monday from Manhattan that "we could use a big fat dose of global warming!" The real estate mogul has been similarly doubtful in past interviews, telling reporters he's not convinced that humans are responsible for changes in climate.
In doubting climate change, Trump (along with other doubters) has referenced a 1970s Newsweek article that mentioned "global cooling," an idea that existed in the 1920s. Its author has since clarified that while climate change doubters like to use the article as proof of inconsistency in the global warming debate, it does not disprove that climate change is actually happening.
While Trump believes "there's weather [but not climate change]," it should be noted that the term "climate" and the term "weather" refer to two different things. Climate takes into account several years' worth of data, usually up to 30. Weather does not refer to averages and can be individually variable.
It's really cold outside, they are calling it a major freeze, weeks ahead of normal. Man, we could use a big fat dose of global warming!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 19, 2015
While climate change is a widely accepted scientific opinion, public opinion on global climate change can be quite different, according to Gallup polling. Among liberal Democrats polled, 89 percent believe global warming will have an impact on the world during their lifetimes. That is the highest percent of any of the groups polled. Among the most conservative of Republicans, just 37 percent believe global warming will affect their generation. The biggest gap between groups is between moderate Republicans and conservative Republicans, a difference of 27 points.
That percentage of global warming doubting makes sense for Trump's political profile, as he tends to attract more evangelical and conservative voters.
Trump is not the only in the GOP candidate who's a climate change doubter. While other candidates like Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie take aim at Obama's climate change policy plans, saying that they will cost the United States too much money, Texas Sen Ted Cruz joined Trump in simply saying that the phenomenon is all hype and bunk science.