President Trump's budget gets away from the "crazy stuff" former President Barack Obama prioritized to fight climate change, such as climate change musicals, Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said Tuesday.
"We are simply trying to get things back in order to where we can look at the folks that pay taxes and say look, we want to do some climate science but we aren't going to do some of the crazy stuff that the previous administration did," he said at a briefing to release Trump's proposed budget for fiscal 2018.
The Environmental Protection Agency budget zeroes out a program for reporting on greenhouse gas emissions that many scientists blame for causing the Earth's climate to warm. The EPA budget also slashes the air and radiation office, responsible under the Obama administration for climate regulations, by nearly 70 percent.
Mulvaney said the budget doesn't "get rid of it [climate funding]," entirely. "Do we target it? Sure. Are a lot of the EPA reductions aimed at reducing the focus on climate science? Yes. Does it mean we are anti-science? Absolutely not."
When asked by a reporter if the budget targets climate change programs as wasteful spending, Mulvaney replied: "You tell me. I think the National Science Foundation used your taxpayer money last year to fund a climate change musical."
He asked the reporter, "Do you think that is a waste of your money?" The reporter didn't respond immediately. "I'll take that as a yes."
The reporter then responded, asking what about the climate science funding?
"What I think you saw happen during the previous administration is the pendulum swing too far to one side, where we were spending too much of your money on climate change. And not very efficiently," Mulvaney said.