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Congressman Mike Quigley

Representing the 5th District of Illinois

Quigley Statement on EPA Administrator Pruitt’s Television Debate Proposal

Jul 12, 2017
Press Release

U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05), who serves as Vice Chair of the Sustainable Energy & Environment Coalition (SEEC), released the following statement on Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt’s announcement that the EPA could be launching a television debate on climate change. Rep. Quigley has sent Administrator Pruitt several debate requests to discuss the merits of climate change but has not received a response.

“Barely one week after the ‘G19’ was formed specifically to rebuke the Trump Administration’s position on climate change and express unwavering commitment to the Paris Agreement, EPA Administrator Pruitt has proposed a new stunt to pit scientists against ideologues in a debate about the settled evidence of climate change. Despite Mr. Pruitt’s claims to the contrary, scientists have already had robust discussions about the existence of climate change and what we can do to address it. While the rest of the world is moving forward on substantive climate action, Mr. Pruitt is risking lives and livelihoods trying to make reality TV.

“Despite his enthusiasm for this misguided sideshow, Mr. Pruitt has repeatedly ignored my public requests for a debate between he and I on the existence of man-made climate change. However, neither of us are scientists. Asking climate researchers to put the future of America’s emissions control measures on the line in a TV spectacle is irresponsible and dangerous. Unfortunately, it is par for the course for an Environmental Protection Agency Administrator who shows no interest in protecting our environment or the lives it supports.” 

In June, following several unanswered requests, Rep. Quigley went forward with hosting a debate. Since Mr. Pruitt did not attend the event, Rep. Quigley held a Q&A session on climate change with concerned Chicagoans instead.