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Inhofe declares victory in speech on global warming

Sen. Jim Inhofe
By JIM MYERS World Washington Bureau
Published: 11/18/2009  9:23 PM
Last Modified: 11/18/2009  9:23 PM

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe, perhaps Congress’ most vocal skeptic of man-made global warming, essentially declared victory Wednesday in a lengthy speech on the Senate floor.

“I proudly declare 2009 as the ‘Year of the Skeptic,’ the year in which scientists who question the so-called global warming consensus are being heard,’’ the Oklahoma Republican said.

“Until this year, any scientist, reporter or politician who dared raise even the slightest suspicion about the science behind global warming was dismissed and repeatedly mocked.’’

Inhofe recalled his own 2003 remarks in which he said much of the debate over global warming was predicated on fear rather than science.

Alarmists warned of a future plagued by catastrophic flooding, economic dislocations, droughts and mosquito-borne diseases, he said.

Inhofe also recalled his most famous comment in which he suggested that man-made global warming would turn out to be “the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people.”

“Today, I have been vindicated,’’ he said.

Inhofe pointed to the upcoming international conference in Copenhagen, Denmark, which previously was viewed as a chance for nations to make some kind of a binding agreement on greenhouse gases.

White House aides said Sunday that a fully binding legal agreement would be put off until a December 2010 meeting in Mexico City, The Associated Press reported.

Inhofe said Wednesday that “the reality, of course, is that Copenhagen will be a disaster.’’

Inhofe is the top Republican on the Senate Environment and

Public Works Committee. He recently helped lead a Republican boycott of that panel’s efforts to act on a major climate change bill.

Democrats were forced to vote the measure out of committee without amendments, and an effort already is under way to come up with a different bill.

That measure now is not expected to be taken up in the Senate until next year.

By JIM MYERS World Washington Bureau

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