3 Reasons We Need More Scientists in Congress

By Bill Maher

Only two members of Congress are trained scientists: Bill Foster and Jerry McNerney. They’re from the same party – guess which one? I’ll give you a hint: not the one that believes Noah’s Ark is settled science.

There are three stories in the news recently that have me wishing for more scientists in Congress: 

First, 29 of the top U.S. scientists wrote a letter praising the Iran deal as unprecedentedly strong. Among them are six Nobel Prize winners and the guy who helped invent the hydrogen bomb. The majority of Congress is against this deal, and most of their stated objections are based on ignorance. If only nuclear scientists and non-proliferation experts could vote, it would pass overwhelmingly.

Second, because fat denial is now a thing, Coke is funding a new group of “scientists” called the “Global Energy Balance Network,” which supports the crackpot theory that you can eat all the crap you want as long as you exercise. The soft drink companies are starting to get very worried because people are starting to recognize sugar as a big part of the problem, so they’re taking a page out of the Koch brothers’ playbook and denying the problem altogether. Many members of Congress are such willing dupes for industry-funded science; if we had more scientists, they’d banish these quacks, not allow them to write their talking points. 

Third, in response to whether humans cause climate change, Ohio Governor John Kasich told NBC’s Chuck Todd, “We don’t want to destroy people’s jobs based on some theory that’s not proven.” This is the Republican candidate so many pundits praise as “reasonable” – if there were more scientists in Congress, they’d have to use other adjectives, like “dumbass.”