[h/t Climate Depot] The Obama campaign defended the president’s silence on climate change during Tuesday’s debate after environmentalists and activists criticized him for not directly addressing the issue.
“Whether it’s on the stump or at the White House, President Obama has long focused on ways to develop clean energy as a core economic pillar. By advocating for the growth of renewable energy, as he did in Tuesday’s debate, President Obama has continually called for action that will address the sources of climate change,” Adam Fetcher, a spokesman for the campaign, told The Hill in an email Wednesday.
Environmentalists have pushed both Obama and GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney to address climate change in the debates, saying the summer's drought, record temperatures, wildfires and storms make it a salient issue.
Many thought the president had that chance during an exchange on energy during Tuesday's debate at Hofstra University in New York state.
Some environmentalists expressed disappointment that Obama touted his record on drilling and coal while failing to mention the effect expanded fossil fuel production would have on climate change.
Others, however, said Obama’s record on climate change, as well as various stump speeches, show his commitment to tackling the issue. They cited air pollution rules and fuel efficiency standards rolled out during Obama’s term, along with the president’s consistent backing of clean energy.