David Jolly urges Republicans to agree on climate change science

- After Rep. David Jolly told an audience at USF he agrees that the climate is changing, that man is at fault, and that it's time to agree on science, he then delivered the kicker.

"I have a confession to make," he said. "I am a Republican."

Jolly's position is different than many in his party, including Florida's Republican governor, two of his party's three remaining presidential candidates, and the vast majority of Republicans in Congress.

In 2014, Politifact.com found only 8 of 278 held Jolly's view.

"I am frustrated by a Congress that continues to fail to arrive at solutions," said Jolly. "We know the climate is changing, so let's have a contest of ideas."

Jolly argues for tax incentives for renewable energy, as opposed to an EPA led solution centered on regulation. He says both major parties use climate change to fire up their bases.

"Does either side really want a solution? Or are they just peddling the narrative for their own political gain?"

Scientists say sea levels could rise 4 feet in 80 years, rendering large portions of Miami and New York uninhabitable.

Jolly is hoping to win over voters in an increasingly purple state.

"Many of them will be very conscious on the issue of climate change, and that goes in both parties, the belief that if you take care of and protect the environment, the economy will thrive," said FOX 13 political editor Craig Patrick.

Indeed, one September poll highlighted in the New York Times showed 54 percent of conservative Republicans believe man has caused climate change. 

"As Republicans, we have fallen into a false trap, set by the Democrats, in arguing over the science," said Jolly. "Let's accept the science. Why are members of Congress arguing over science?"

Jolly has co-sponsored a resolution with 15 Republicans -- including two from Florida -- that calls on the House to admit climate change is real and is caused by man.

He does not expect Republican leadership to hold a vote on it.

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