On Monday, Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) used the devastating Oklahoma tornado as an excuse to bash Republicans for denying global warming and implied Republicans were responsible for actually allowing the destructive natural disaster to occur.
“So, you may have a question for me,” Whitehouse said on the Senate floor. “Why do you care? Why do you, Sheldon Whitehouse, Democrat of Rhode Island, care if we Republicans run off the climate cliff like a bunch of proverbial lemmings and disgrace ourselves? I’ll tell you why. We’re stuck in this together. We are stuck in this together.”
After blaming natural disasters in Oklahoma, Alabama, and Texas on global warming and Republicans, Whitehouse continued his rant by criticizing the Republicans he blamed for then asking the government for federal aid dollars.
“When cyclones tear up Oklahoma and hurricanes swamp Alabama and wildfires scorch Texas, you come to us, the rest of the country, for billions of dollars to recover,” he said, according to the Daily Caller. “And the damage that your polluters and deniers are doing doesn’t just hit Oklahoma and Alabama and Texas. It hits Rhode Island with floods and storms. It hits Oregon with acidified seas, it hits Montana with dying forests. So, like it or not, we’re in this together.”
He continued, “You drag America with you to your fate.”
Whitehouse then said he wanted a Republican Party that “returned to its senses” and was a strong and “worthy adversary in a strong America that has done right by its people and the world.”
“I don’t want a Republican Party disgraced, that let its extremists run off the cliff, and an America suffering from grave economic and environmental and diplomatic damage because we failed, because we didn’t wake up and do our duty to our people, and because we didn’t lead the world,” Whitehouse said. “I do not want that future. But that’s where we’re headed.”
As families across Oklahoma were suffering, politics was what was first and foremost on Whitehouse’s mind.