Scientists: Kindergartners Know More About Science Than This Candidate (Hint: It’s A Republican)

How little do Republican candidates understand science? According to these experts, about the level of the average kindergarten student.

In a scathing analysis conducted by the Associated Press, scientists were given statements made by all the major Republican and Democratic presidential contenders with their names obscured. The scientists, all top climate and biological scientists, then rated the statements based on a 0 to 100 scale of accuracy. When the results were revealed, the divide between the conservative and liberal candidates was stark. The Republicans weren’t even close.

Graphic shows results of survey of scientists on candidates’ statements on climate change; 2c x 5 inches; 96.3 mm x 127 mm;

Hillary Clinton’s comments on science were rated to be nearly flawless. In fact, all of the Democratic candidates did extremely well. The most inaccurate Democrat was a whopping 23 points ahead of the closest Republican. At the very bottom of the spectrum were the top three highest polling Republicans: Donald Trump (15), Ben Carson (13), and – don’t laugh – Ted Cruz (6). Six!

Worst still for Senator Ted Cruz, the group of scientists were unanimous that he was clearly the most scientifically-ignorant of anyone. Every single one of them put him dead last. After finding out that Cruz was the mysterious dummy, climate scientist Michael Mann unloaded on the senator.

“This individual understands less about science (and climate change) than the average kindergartner,” Michael Mann, a Pennsylvania State University meteorology professor, wrote of Cruz’s statements. “That sort of ignorance would be dangerous in a doorman, let alone a president.”

What statements would those be? There are almost too many ignorant comments to chose from, but lets take a look at a few:

  • “The last 15 years, there has been no recorded warming. Contrary to all the theories that they are expounding, there should have been warming over the last 15 years. It hasn’t happened.” (That’s false.)
  • “Climate change is not science, it’s religion.” (That’s false.)
  • Today, the global warming alarmists are the equivalent of the flat-Earthers. It used to be [that] it is accepted scientific wisdom the Earth is flat, and this heretic named Galileo was branded a denier.” (No, no, no. That’s really false.)

And while he “won’t discuss evolution directly” with reporters, his father has referred to it as a communist lie. He launched his campaign at a Christian college known for teaching creationism. And regularly rubs elbows with right-wing pastors who condemn evolution with gusto.

It’s quickly becoming clear that the Republican Party is actually regressing on scientific literacy. While the majority of Americans – especially young people – continue to become more accepting of scientific facts like evolution and climate change, Republicans have become entrenched in their outdated models. Nowhere is that more obvious than with climate change. Its effects are already being witnessed, its existence conclusive, and still we have a mainstream party that continues to deny it using snowballs and misinformation. That’s terrifying.

As the 21st century moves forward, and our economic and military security relies more and more heavily on technological and scientific advancements, voting for any of the Republican candidates is downright irresponsible. And in particular, Cruz should be made to prove he can pass kindergarten before being allowed anywhere near the Oval Office.

Feature image via CNBC screen capture