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Yale Study: Global warming impact on 2012 election

A recent survey by the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication and George Mason University Center for Climate Change Communication shows that many undecided voters still have questions about climate change, but, in general their beliefs align closer with likely Obama supporters than likely Romney supporters.

  • According to the survey, only 3-4% of likely Obama voters and undecided voters believe that global warming is not happening, compared to 33% of likely Romney voters.
  • 65% of likely Obama supporters and undecided voters also believe that global warming is caused mostly by human activities. Among likely Romney supporters, 27% believe that global warming is caused mostly by human activities, and 50% believe that warming is caused by natural variability.
  • On the question of scientific consensus, 66% of likely Obama voters believe that scientists agree that global warming is happening. 22% of likely Romney voters believe there is a scientific consensus. Undecided voters are right in the middle with 46% believing there is a scientific consensus, and 42% answering that they believe most scientists don’t think global warming is happening.
  • The issue is important enough to guide the voting choice of 75% of likely Obama voters, 61% of undecided voters, and 36% of likely Romney voters.
It seems everyone would like at least a little more information on global warming, with undecided voters seeking the most. 30% of likely Obama voters say they do not need any more information on global warming. 35% of likely Romney voters do not need any more information on the topic. Only 15% of undecided voters say they do not need any more information. That leaves a whopping 85% of undecided voters seeking more information on global warming.
Undoubtedly, there will be a flood of climate change information coming out in the six weeks leading up to the election. Unfortunately, it will be run through the political and special interest filters before reaching the general public – further clouding the global warming picture for many Americans as they wonder who to believe.

Fred Campagna

President and Chief Meteorologist - Right Weather LLC AMS Certified Consulting Meteorologist #756 AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist #126

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