CNN's Tapper: Republican party 'acts as if climate change is not real'

CNN's Tapper: Republican party 'acts as if climate change is not real'
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CNN anchor Jake Tapper said the Republican party "acts as if climate change is not real" in an interview with Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainMeghan McCain on Pelosi, McCarthy fight: 'I think they're all bad' Democrats seek to counter GOP attacks on gas prices Biden nominates Jeff Flake as ambassador to Turkey MORE (R-Ariz.) on Sunday.

The commentary came as Hurricane Irma slammed into south Florida during Tapper's Sunday political affairs program, "State of the Union."

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"As it hits Florida, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fact that many experts say that the storm is more intense because of climate change," Tapper said to the 2008 Republican presidential nominee during an interview. 

"Back in 2012 when Superstorm Sandy hit, your daughter Meghan McCain tweeted, 'So are we still going to go with climate change not being real, fellow Republicans?' "

John McCain has called for curbing greenhouse gas emissions and co-sponsored cap-and-trade bills in the past, including a 2007 bill co-sponsored by with then-Sen. Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaBiden's belated filibuster decision: A pretense of principle at work Obama, Springsteen releasing book based on their podcast 10 books that take readers inside the lives of American leaders MORE (D-Ill.).

"The Republican Party, as you know, generally speaking, acts as if climate change is not real," Tapper continued. "There are exceptions, you, your daughter, Meghan, the Republican mayor of Miami. But generally speaking, the president, the governor of Florida, et cetera, act as if it’s not real even though the overwhelming scientific consensus is that it’s real and it’s man made."

"I don't know because I can't define their motives," replied McCain. "But I know that there are things happening with the climate in the world that is unprecedented. 
"Second of all, we need to have, in my view, nuclear power as part of the answer. It's the cleanest, cheapest, in many ways, source of power. My friends in the environmental community refuse to make that part of the equation. I'm not saying it is the equation but I'm saying it has got to be part of it, because they're basically anti-nuclear," he added. 

A government report showed that 2016 was the warmest year on record globally. 

"Globally-averaged temperatures in 2016 were 1.78 degrees Fahrenheit (0.99 degrees Celsius) warmer than the mid-20th century mean. This makes 2016 the third year in a row to set a new record for global average surface temperatures," the report from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) concluded.