The fallout of the University of East Anglia CRU e-mails threatens to smother the credibility of anthropogenic global-warming advocates — and the UN along with them. In a new survey conducted after the exposure of UEA-CRU’s behind-the-scenes chicanery, the Rasmussen poll indicates that a majority of respondents think AGW scientists have lied about their data. Only 26% think that such dishonesty and fraud is either not very likely or not at all likely:
Most Americans (52%) believe that there continues to be significant disagreement within the scientific community over global warming.
While many advocates of aggressive policy responses to global warming say a consensus exists, the latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 25% of adults think most scientists agree on the topic. Twenty-three percent (23%) are not sure. …
Fifty-nine percent (59%) of Americans say it’s at least somewhat likely that some scientists have falsified research data to support their own theories and beliefs about global warming. Thirty-five percent (35%) say it’s Very Likely. Just 26% say it’s not very or not at all likely that some scientists falsified data.
And the news actually gets worse. Rasmussen indicates that the skepticism over AGW credibility predates the CRU scandal:
This skepticism does not appear to be the result of the recent disclosure of e-mails confirming such data falsification as part of the so-called “Climategate” scandal. Just 20% of Americans say they’ve followed news reports about those e-mails Very Closely, while another 29% have followed them Somewhat Closely.
That’s a lower level of interest than has been shown about the White House party crashers and suggests that Americans have had their doubts about the science of global warming for some time.
Despite the protestations of “consensus” from the Obama administration — reiterated by Robert Gibbs yesterday — only a quarter of Americans actually believe that a global consensus exists among scientists. Only 22% believe that the UN, which sponsored the IPCC report based in large part of UEA-CRU findings, is a credible resource for AGW. And only 15% of all respondents think AGW is a higher priority than rebuilding the economy and creating jobs, against 71% who believe jobs and the economy should take priority.
Obviously, that latter number does not just include Republicans. There is a remarkable unanimity across all demographics in this question. Democrats, for instance, prioritize jobs over AGW action, 65/21, almost matching independents at 68/18. For both men and women, the numbers are more than 4-1. The highest rating AGW gets in any demographic is women under 40, where the split goes 71/25 in favor of jobs and the economy.
The numbers on credibility for AGW scientists are almost as bad. Every age demographic has a majority who believe that it is either somewhat or very likely that AGW researchers have “falsified data,” as the question was asked. Independents split 2-1, 54/27, and even a plurality of Democrats now have misgivings about scientific ethics in AGW, 48/32. Every racial/ethnic category has a majority believing in the likelihood of falsified AGW data, as well as every income demo, every age demo, and even every employment demo — including 56% of government employees.
This makes the job-killing cap-and-trade bill a political nightmare for Democrats, especially once the CRU scandal really captures the public imagination. No one will support higher energy prices and the economic handicaps they will impose for a cause rife with perceived falsehoods, misrepresentations, and flat-out fraud. The cap-and-trade bill has already been considered close to dead, thanks to Harry Reid’s rescheduling of it to the spring of an election year. This should convince all but the most radical Democrats on Capitol Hill to give up the effort entirely.