From the March 11 edition of CNN's New Day:
CHRIS CUOMO (HOST): Very often you picture yourself and pitch yourself as, look, I'm a new generation. I see things a different way. I speak for the future of this country. One of the departures from that image is where you are on climate change. You spoke about it last night. You spoke about what practically can be done to make a difference with what you say is the weather. Why not embrace the science though? You didn't speak to that specifically last night. The science to 99 percent of the community is clear. It's something that's seen as a future perspective. Why don't you share it?
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R-FL): Because, number one, yeah, OK, there is a consensus among scientists around the world that humans are contributing to what's happening in our climate. What there is no consensus on is how much of the changes that are going on are due to human activity, in essence the sensitivity argument. And as a policymaker, here's why that matters. Because these people that are pushing this are acting on it like it's some sort of religious tenet that they want us to admit. You know, here's the bottom line. We don't know how much of it is due to human activity,and that's relevant in the policy world because they are asking me to support public policies that, by their own admission of the climate activists, these climate policies they want us to adopt would not have a measurable impact on the ecology or the environment now or for the foreseeable future, meaning in my lifetime, yours, or my children's. On the other hand, economists tell us they will have a real impact.
CUOMO: But you get painted as a denier. You get painted as a denier, though, Senator. You get painted as a denier.
RUBIO: Well, sure, by the people who want everyone to say yes or no. Well they can paint me anyway they want, but the bottom line is what I don't admit is that the policies they want will do anything for our environment.
CUOMO: But on science you can't say yes or no.
RUBIO: Yeah. But, look, climate change is a measurable, right. Is the sea level rising? You can measure that. OK? You can measure whether sea level is rising. That's not the question you should be asking a policymaker. The question you should be asking a policymaker is what can we do in government to affect the rise of sea levels? And the answer is oh, pass these laws that we want you to pass. So I asked the environmentalists and others who are supporting those laws, well how many inches or feet of sea level rise will that law prevent? And their answer is it won't prevent any, but it sets an example. It sends a statement. And then I asked the economists and they say it'll have a real impact on our economy. So, they are asking me to support public policies that will do nothing to affect the environment but will have a direct and immediate impact on our economy. I think that's a terrible tradeoff. I don't think that's a good way to go forward. So anyone who stands for that is called a denier? Well these guys are off on their own crusade here. But it's just not good public policy.