SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — With the smell of California wildfires in the air, President Donald Trump on Monday ignored the scientific consensus that climate change is playing a central role in West Coast infernos.
He reiterated his unfounded claim that poor forest management is to blame.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom was respectful with President Donald Trump about climate change during his visit to the state for a briefing about the massive wildfires that have burned throughout the state this year.
During his visit, Newsom took a much softer tone, telling Trump they could agree to disagree on climate change. Newsom said his state can do a better job of forest management, but he tells President Donald Trump that it is “self-evident that climate change is real and that is exacerbating this.”
Trump said things are getting cooler and said he does not believe the science saying otherwise.
“Well, I don’t think science knows actually," Trump said.
The fires are threatening to become another front in Trump’s reelection bid, which is already facing hurdles because of the coronavirus pandemic, joblessness and social unrest.
His Democratic challenger, Joe Biden, in his own speech Monday said the destruction and mounting death toll across California, Oregon and Washington required stronger presidential leadership, and he labeled Trump a “climate arsonist.”
Biden said, "Hurricanes don’t swerve to avoid red states or blue states. Wildfires don’t skip towns that voted a certain way. The impacts of climate change don’t pick and choose. That’s because it’s not a partisan phenomenon. It’s science.”