Here's How Presidential Candidates Rank on Climate Change Rhetoric

The Associated Press tapped eight scientists to grade top-tier presidential candidates’ climate change rhetoric. Not surprisingly, many candidates failed.

AP Climate

Here’s how it worked, according to the AP:

"[E]ight climate and biological scientists graded for scientific accuracy what a dozen top candidates said in debates, interviews and tweets, using a 0 to 100 scale.

To try to eliminate possible bias, the candidates' comments were stripped of names and given randomly generated numbers, so the professors would not know who made each statement they were grading. Also, the scientists who did the grading were chosen by professional scientific societies."

Some scientists opted out of grading certain candidates such as former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R).

The results with all of the given caveats? The presumptive Democratic nominee, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D), topped the pack with a score of 94, while Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) fell to the bottom at a meager 6 points.

The “fact check” by the AP highlights again the stark disparity between parties regarding how climate change is discussed. Nearly all Republicans received a failing score in accuracy, while some scientists pointed to Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) as one who has at points overstated climate change’s impacts.

This survey is a reminder that the politics of climate change are very different than the science of it.