Sarah Palin tore into Bill Nye’s scientific qualifications on Thursday, saying he has no authority to say climate-change skeptics are wrong.
Palin, the former governor of Alaska and the 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate, said the man known for his show "Bill Nye the Science Guy" is using his position of authority to harm children by teaching them that climate change is real and man-made.
Palin said behind the “alarmism” that the climate is changing is a “predetermined” and political agenda “of those, I think, who are controlling the narrative right now on changes in the weather.”
She repeatedly dismissed climate change as changes in weather and said scientists who believe the consensus that humans are the main cause of global warming are trying to shut down human progress.
Palin encouraged parents to teach their children to doubt climate change and to “ask those questions and not just believe what Bill Nye the Science Guy is trying to tell them.”
Palin, largely unknown on the national stage before the 2008 election, made a name for herself as an outspoken advocate of fossil fuels, repeatedly exclaiming, “Drill, baby, drill!” during the campaign to encourage more oil and natural gas drilling.
She has endorsed Donald TrumpDonald TrumpTrump: Chinese president ‘likes me a lot’ GOP senator: There will never be full U.S.-Mexico border wall Bottom Line MORE in the 2016 election, though she largely shied away from talking about presidential politics Thursday, except to suggest that candidates talk more about the controversy over climate change.
“It’s something that our candidates should be talking about and giving us their view on and hopefully acknowledging that it needs to become, in the science community, less political,” she said. “Otherwise, it leads us to believe that so many things coming from perhaps the scientists could be bogus. If this is bogus, you know, what else are they trying to tell us and trying to control us around if they can’t get this one right?”
Nye is a one of the main targets of the film shown Thursday, known as "Climate Hustle." It stars Marc Morano, head of skeptic blog Climate Depot, and is presented largely as a response to "Merchants of Doubt," a documentary attacking skeptics and comparing them to the tobacco industry.
In an interview with Morano in the film that he highlighted, Nye advocates for investigating people and companies who make a name for themselves doubting climate science.
“The introduction of this extreme doubt … about climate change is affecting my quality of life as a public citizen,” he said. “So I can see where people are very concerned about this and are pursuing criminal investigations as well engaging in discussions like this … they’re keeping us from getting to work, they’re holding us back.”
Palin shot back at the event.
“I’m all about mankind. I want life to be better for mankind and that takes development of our natural resources. That’s what allowed America to become exceptional,” she said.
“If anything, some people would say I’m pushing progress and development too aggressively, certainly not holding anybody back, I want people to work, I want people to produce.”