Senator Ted Cruz opens the hearing.

While the eyes of the world are on Paris, where nations are hammering out an agreement to do something about the reality of climate change, the Senate Subcommittee on Space, Science, and Competitiveness once again held a hearing on Tuesday to debate whether climate change is for real. Subcommittee Chairman Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), who is running for his party’s presidential nomination, convened the hearing titled “Data or dogma? Promoting open inquiry in the debate over the magnitude of human impact on Earth’s climate.”

Senator Cruz brought in four witnesses to testify, mostly chosen from the usual suspects that have participated in similar hearings in the past. There were two of the very small handful of climate scientists who express doubts about human responsibility for climate change—Georgia Tech professor and blogger Judith Curry and John Christy from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. William Happer, a retired Princeton physicist and chairman of the George C. Marshall Institute, a conservative think-tank, was also invited to speak. The fourth person brought in to talk climate science was conservative radio host and columnist Mark Steyn. (The last two were keynote speakers at this year’s Heartland Institute conference for climate “skeptics.”)

Senator Cruz opened the hearing with some ironic remarks. “This is a hearing on the science behind the claims of global warming. Now, this is the Science Subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee, and we’re hearing from distinguished scientists, sharing their views, their interpretations, their analysis of the data and the evidence. Now, I am the son of two mathematicians—two computer programmers and scientists—and I believe that public policy should follow the actual science, and the actual data and evidence, and not political and partisan claims that run contrary to the science and data and evidence.”

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