Fiorina Hits Todd for Using Climate Change to Talk California Drought

During an appearance on Meet the Press, Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina hit back at moderator Chuck Todd for pushing the issue of climate change during a discussion on the ongoing California drought.

Todd proclaimed “[i]n your home state of California, drought, the wildfires. More evidence is coming out from the scientific community that says climate change has made this worse. Not to say that the drought is directly caused but it’s made it worse.” 

For her part, Fiorina refused to accept Todd’s claim and instated blamed “liberal politicians” for causing the massive drought: 

You know what’s also made it worse? Politicians, liberal politicians who stood up for 40 years as the population of California doubled and saying, you cannot build a new reservoir and you cannot build a water conveyance system. And so, for 40 years 70% of the rainfall has washed out to sea. That's pretty dumb when you know you’re going to have droughts every single year, or every three years let’s say. 

The Meet the Press moderator continued to play up how climate change made the California drought worse and how he “asked Governor Jerry Brown to respond to that exact criticism you made. I said, do you blame liberal environmentalists in California, specifically on dams and reservoirs, and this is how he responded.” 

After Brown called Fiorina’s argument “such utter ignorance” and how “these people if they want to run for president, better do kind of eighth grade science before they make any more utterances” the Republican presidential candidate pushed back once again: 

That's a lot of insults but of course it makes no sense what he just said. It would be helpful if you were fighting fires to have more water. Firefighters in California have difficulty getting enough water now, so they're using other means. 

It would be helpful to agriculture and everything else to have water saved in the good years so that you could use it in the bad years. I'm not denying that California's air is dry. That's obvious. I'm not denying that there is a drought. But there is no denying that politicians have made this problem immeasurably worse. 

See relevant transcript below. 

NBC’s Meet the Press

August 23, 2015

CHUCK TODD: In your home state of California, drought, the wildfires. More evidence is coming out from the scientific community that says climate change has made this worse. Not to say that the drought is directly caused but it’s made it worse.   

CARLY FIORINA: You know what’s also made it worse? Politicians, liberal politicians who stood up for 40 years as the population of California doubled and saying, you cannot build a new reservoir and you cannot build a water conveyance system. And so, for 40 years 70% of the rainfall has washed out to sea. That's pretty dumb when you know you’re going to have droughts every single year, or every three years let’s say. 

TODD: So the other day I asked Governor Jerry Brown to respond to that exact criticism you made. I said, do you blame liberal environmentalists in California, specifically on dams and reservoirs, and this is how he responded. 

JERRY BROWN: I've never heard of such utter ignorance. Building a dam won't do a damn thing about fires or climate change or the absence of moisture in the ground and vegetation in California. So I think these people if they want to run for president, better do kind of eighth grade science before they make any more utterances. 

FIORINA: That's a lot of insults but of course it makes no sense what he just said. It would be helpful if you were fighting fires to have more water. Firefighters in California have difficulty getting enough water now, so they're using other means. It would be helpful to agriculture and everything else to have water saved in the good years so that you could use it in the bad years. I'm not denying that California's air is dry. That's obvious. I'm not denying that there is a drought. But there is no denying that politicians have made this problem immeasurably worse. 

NB Daily Campaigns & Elections 2016 Presidential Environment Global Warming Wildfires NBC Meet the Press Chuck Todd Carly Fiorina Jerry Brown

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