McCain Says He ‘Can’t Divine’ Why Some GOPers Deny Climate Change

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., walks from his Senate office as Congress returns from the August recess to face work on immigration, the debt limit, funding the government, and help for victims of Hurricane Harvey, in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2017.  Earlier, McCain declared President Donald Trump’s decision to phase out an Obama administration program that has protected hundreds of thousands of young immigrants “the wrong approach” at a time when Republicans and Democrats need to work together.  (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) on Sunday said he can’t guess why some fellow Republicans deny the scientific consensus that climate change exists and is affected by human activity.

“I don’t know because I can’t divine their motives,” McCain said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

“There is things happening with the climate in the world that is unprecedented,” he added. “We have to understand that the climate may be changing and we can take commonsense measures which will not harm the American people.”

McCain also said an agreement President Donald Trump came to with Democrats for a short-term increase in the debt limit “was not an exercise in bipartisanship.”

“The Republicans leaders, Ryan and McConnell, were surprised to hear that he had cut this deal with Chuck and Nancy,” McCain said, referring to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), and their Democratic counterparts House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY).

“The proposal that the President accepted, the speaker of the House had just categorically rejected,” McCain said. “So that’s not the way we need to do business.”

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Esme Cribb is a newswriter for TPM in New York City. She can be found on Twitter @emquiry and reached by email at esme@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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