Coburn: 'I am a global warming denier'

Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) wanted to make sure he didn’t mince words when it comes to his position on climate change.

“I am a global warming denier. I don’t deny that,” he said during a Monday speech at the Tulsa Regional Chamber of Commerce, according to the Tulsa World.

A physician by trade, Coburn leaned on his science credentials to assert that evidence shows the Earth is headed for a “mini-ice age.”

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That would be at odds with the scientific consensus that the world is warming, and that humans are largely the cause of it through burning fossil fuels that pump greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

Many Republicans question the science behind climate change, and have made their views known in various town halls this month.

The attention to climate change comes as Republicans, as well as some centrist Democrats, have criticized President Obama’s second-term push to curb greenhouse gas emissions.

Obama’s climate plan exercises executive authority that doesn’t require the consent of Congress. Its centerpiece would impose emissions standards on new and existing power plants.

The plan has rankled conservatives, who say the regulations it calls for will damage the economy.

Democrats, along with green and public health groups, have praised Obama’s climate agenda. They say it would help slow the effects of climate change while also improving public health.