Clinton: Romney Ridiculed Obama for “Turning Back the Seas”

Former President Bill Clinton spoke at a rally for Barack Obama’s re-election get-out-the-vote effort in Minneapolis Tuesday morning — just as the East Coast was coming to grips with the extent of damage caused overnight by Hurricane Sandy. Clinton criticized Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney for dismissing the threat of climate change and the damage it will cause cities like New York as the oceans rise and warm, and as storms grow more frequent and more deadly.

“Mitt Romney ridiculed the president (in their first debate) for his effort to fight global warming in economically beneficial ways,” said Clinton. “He (mockingly) said ‘oh, you’re gonna turn back the seas’. In my part of America we would have liked it if someone could have done that yesterday.”

Clinton spoke of a sobering time in New York and in states affected by Hurricane Sandy, which swept through Chappaqua, the town in New York state where he and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton currently live. Their daughter Chelsea and her husband, who live in New York City, had filled their bathtub with water Monday night as the storm approached, in anticipation of losing electricity and water access.

“All up and down the East Coast there are mayors, many of them Republicans, who are being told, ‘you gotta move these houses back away from the ocean, you gotta lift them up. Climate change is going to change the water levels on a permanent basis. If you want your town insured, you have to do this’.”

Jacob Wheeler

In addition to shooting videos for The UpTake, Jacob Wheeler is a contributing editor at the progressive political magazine In These Times, publishes the Glen Arbor Sun in his native Michigan, and authored "Between Light and Shadow," a recent book about the Guatemalan adoption industry. Wheeler's stories have appeared in such magazines as the Utne Reader, Earth Island Journal, Rotarian and Teaching Tolerance magazine, and newspapers including the San Francisco Chronicle and Christian Science Monitor. He speaks fluent Spanish, German and Danish.

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