US Election 2020: Trump support shows public ignoring climate change

2 weeks ago 1

Scientists have branded the US election result 'horrific' after it failed to deliver the Joe Biden landslide that they had been hoping for.

Even though the Democrat still has a chance of victory, the scientists told journal Nature that they were hoping for a full-scale rejection of Trump that never came. 

Nature was first published in 1869 and describes itself as 'the world's leading multi-disciplinary science journal' and it has published numerous articles critical of the Trump administration with headlines including 'Four ways Trump has meddled in pandemic science. 

The journal published an article featuring quotes from several of their Biden-backing readers and prominent scientists bemoaning the fact that the US election result did not 'repudiate' Trump's presidency. 

One described the result as 'horrific', while another said it means voters are 'rejecting reality and opting more for a reality show', which he called 'frightening'.

Trump significantly out-performed his polls this election and many critics have claimed that normal Americans are scared to admit they will vote conservative to pollsters because of a perceived atmosphere of 'cancel culture'.

Naomi Oreskes, a science historian at Harvard University said Trump's win in Florida - a state at risk from climate change - shows that scientists are not being listened to. 

Biden is currently narrow favorite to take the election, but Trump has performed much better than expected after pollsters predicted a Democrat landslide

Scientists interviewed about the election result described the narrow contest between Trump and Biden as 'horrific', and said it shows voters are 'rejecting reality' (file image)

Nature was first published in 1869 and describes itself as 'the world's leading multi-disciplinary science journal'

Nature had polled its scientist readers ahead of the vote, and found that - of the 580 who responded - an overwhelming 87 per cent planned to vote for Biden.

Among the reasons for their support was Biden pledging to rejoin the Paris Climate Accord to tackle climate change, which they largely agree is a big issue.

Biden has also promised to 'listen to the scientists' when it comes to plotting America's coronavirus response.

Going into the election, polls had predicted a Democrat landslide - as they had done in 2016 - but again Trump defied the odds, bringing the vote right down to the wire.

As of Thursday morning, the race was still too close to call, hinging on razor-thin margins in just a handful of swing states.

Asked to sum up her feelings about the result, Kim Cobb, a climate scientist at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, said simple: 'It's horrific.'

One UK researcher said it is 'depressing' that voters have not 'heeded the evidence of the last four years' and fully rejected Trump (file image)

Michael Lubell, a physicist who tracks science policy at the City College of New York, speculated that voters have 'rejected reality' in favor of a 'reality show'.

'That, to me, is frightening,' he added.

Athene Donald, a physicist at the UK's University of Cambridge, gave a similar view, saying it is 'depressing' that Americans have not 'heeded the evidence of the last four years' to fully reject Trump. 

Gerardo Chowell-Puente, a Mexican-born epidemiological modeller at Georgia State University in Atlanta, said he has been 'hurt' by Trump's rhetoric over the last four years, and was hoping for a change in 2020.  

'I cannot wait,' he said. 'I am just crossing my fingers.' 

Joe Biden is narrow favorite to take back the White House for the Democrats, having captured 253 of the required 270 electoral college votes required for the win.

He is currently leading in two midwestern states, Nevada and Arizona, which together will give him enough extra votes to claim victory.

But his lead in Arizona narrowed significantly overnight from around 200,000 votes to 68,000, with hundreds of thousands of votes left to tally.

If the state goes to Trump, then Biden's victory will hinge on results in Georgia, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania.

Trump holds narrow leads in all three states, but Biden is gaining ground as mail-in ballots are counted. 

Trump can afford to lose North Carolina - where a result is not expected for days - and still win. A loss in Pennsylvania would be fatal.

A loss in Georgia could also end Trump's bid for a second term, but also raises the prospect of a dead heat depending on how other results go. 

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