09/07/2012 06:09 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Hat Trick: Obama Speaks on Climate, Crowd Cheers, the 'Village' Notices

President Obama spoke directly to climate issues Thursday night in Charlotte. With a direct slap at Mitt Romney's sad climate joking to anti-science cheering, the President said:

And yes, my plan will continue to reduce the carbon pollution that is heating our planet -- because climate change is not a hoax. More droughts and floods and wildfires are not a joke. They're a threat to our children's future. And in this election, you can do something about it.

While the Democratic Party platform had strong words on climate issues (although quite toned down from 2008), commentators were noticing a dearth of climate mentions during the convention. As we played "climate spotting," the references to climate or climate-related issues were few and far between. This changed yesterday with comments by Barney Frank and John Kerry. And then the clincher: the President's emphasis that "climate change is not a hoax" and that climate disruption / extreme weather event implications "are not a joke."

An item of note: those at the convention gave the climate change paragraph among the most positive reaction given to any part of the speech.

And, even more astounding, the "Village" seems to have noticed.
  • Politico rated the speech's "best lines" and this was #5 of 15 -- and #2 in terms of policy-related quotations.
  • MSNBC rated applause lines -- "And, in this election, you can do something it" was #6 with 17.2 seconds of applause.
At the presidential and congressional levels, 2012 is truly an election about science. Science is truly a differentiator between the parties -- with climate science being the most extreme example of this.  And on this, the American public (and America"s scientists) are not sympathetic to the Republican Party.

Climate change is an issue that lends itself to coherent discussion.

And climate change is a winning political issue.

The Obama-Biden campaign seems to be waking to the power of climate as an issue.

The President showed this last night.