Is Obama anti-science?

When I make the argument as I have repeatedly on this blog and in other contexts that as a whole the Republican Party and its leadership are anti-science, one of the counter arguments fired back at me is that Obama is himself anti-science.

My initial reaction to this “Obama is anti-science” argument is somewhat visceral, thinking something along the lines of “bloody nonsense”.

But I thought perhaps I should take their hypothesis seriously and see if there are any data supporting it.

So what is the case that Obama is an anti-science president? It mostly consists of Obama not being a fan of somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT), not being as open with federal data as some would have liked, and not pushing even harder for NIH funding. There are also some folks who understandably disagree with the Obama administration about very specific science-related decisions such as a possible regulation on biological diversity.

Of course the more conservative folks call Obama anti-science for his global warming and for saying the extreme wildfire season that Texas had might be related to global warming.

Is Obama really anti-science?

I don’t think so, but let me know your thoughts in our poll above. 

You also have to consider the alternative to Obama, which is the Republican Party that depending on the situation seems to believe more in the Easter Bunny than in science. Everything is relative and compared to GOP, in my opinion Obama is very pro-science.

2 Comments


  1. If course, it’s not really a binary question. As soon as I thought of Asimov’s essay “The Relativity of Wrong”, how to vote in the poll became clear. Compared with the any of the running R’s, Obama could hardly be called anti-science.

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