Category Archives: Science

Inspired by Trump’s attacks on science, this former engineer is running for Congress

by Natasha Geiling, ThinkProgress, 6/29/17

Chrissy Houlahan is running for one of the most closely-watched congressional seats in Pennsylvania.

Walk through the halls of Congress, and there’s one type of person that you won’t see much of: scientists. Out of the 535 members of the 114th Congress, just 41 representatives have a background in medicine, science, or engineering, according to a report released by the Congressional Research Service.

Chrissy Houlahan, a Stanford- and MIT-trained engineer and former Air Force captain wants to change that.

Houlahan is part of a growing wave of scientists that have been inspired to run for Congress by the current political climate, which often pits scientific facts against industry influence and political dogma. For instance, the House Science Committee is chaired by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), a man who has received more than $675,597 from the fossil fuel industry and has referred to the official magazine of the American Association for the Advancement of Science as a non-objective source. The House of Representatives has voted multiple times to limit the Environmental Protection Agency’s use of scientific research.

According to 314 Action, a political action committee aimed at encouraging scientists and engineers to run for elective office, 6,000 scientists and STEM professionals have reached out to express interest in running for office as of this month….

keep reading at ThinkProgress

Scientists prepare to march on Trump

By Devin Henry, The Hill, 4/21/17

Scientists and climate activists opposed to the Trump administration are bringing their message to the streets of Washington.

Two marches in D.C. this month will bring out scientists and other protesters who say the Trump administration’s policies sideline science’s role in public policy, undermining the science on climate change and other issues.

Organizers will host the March for Science on the National Mall on Saturday, followed by the People’s Climate March the week after.

President Trump is the unifying factor for both marches, both in how they came together and what messages they’ll promote.

“I think it’s fair to say that this administration catalyzed the happening of this march, there’s no doubt about that,” said Lydia Villa-Komaroff, a national co-chairwoman of the March for Science who will speak at the Saturday event….

keep reading at The Hill

Watch Mike Pence question global warming and demur on evolution

By Chris Mooney, Washington Post, July 14 2016, excerpt:

…Trump has said that he is “not a big believer in man-made climate change.” Now watch Mike Pence discuss both climate change and evolution on a 2009 episode of MSNBC’s “Hardball with Chris Matthews” (the fun begins around minute 6):

The full transcript of this interview is actually available online, right here. Some key quotes from Pence from the interview, with my notes in parentheses:

On climate change: “I think the science is very mixed on the subject of global warming, Chris.” (It isn’t.) “In the mainstream media, Chris, there is a denial of the growing skepticism in the scientific community about global warming.” (There wasn’t, and isn’t, growing skepticism.)

On teaching creationism in schools: “I think in our schools we should teach all of the facts about all of these controversial areas, and let our students, let our children and our children’s children decide based upon the facts and the science.” (This would appear to be a “teach the controversy” position, supported by creationism and intelligent design supporters.)

When asked whether he believes in evolution (for a second time): “I believe with all my heart that God created the heavens and the earth, the seas and all that is in them …. How he did that, I’ll ask him about some day.” (Many religious believers have no problem saying that God acted through the process of evolution, a view that is not considered to be science-denying creationism, and that reconciles, successfully, science and religion. But note here that Pence does not specifically accept that stance.)…

See the full post at Washington Post