White House Blocks Testimony Calling Climate Change 'Possibly Catastrophic' Because It Didn't 'Jibe' With Trump Administration Views

The White House blocked a State Department senior intelligence analyst's congressional testimony on climate change being "potentially catastrophic" this week because it didn't "jibe" with the Trump administration's views on the matter.

The analyst, Rob Schoonover, an adjunct professor at Georgetown University, was barred from submitting testimony to the House Intelligence Committee after officials refused the written document's references to federal scientific findings on climate change, Washington Post reported.

The move comes as prominent scientists, senior military officials and intelligence staffers have doubled down on their efforts to warn the White House of the potentially disastrous impacts of climate change on America's national security, a position that Trump has vehemently opposed.

"Absent extensive mitigating factors or events, we see few plausible future scenarios where significant — possibly catastrophic — harm does not arise from the compounded effects of climate change," the document reads.

Trump administration officials told the Post that the White House Office of Legislative Affairs ultimately permitted Schoonover to appear before the House panel but barred him from submitting his written statement into the permanent Congressional record. It did not "jibe" with what the administration is seeking to do on climate change, one official said.

"The reasoning, according to a June 4 email, was that the science did not match the Trump administration's views," the New York Times reported after reviewing an email Daniel Greenwood — deputy assistant to the president in the White House official of legislative affairs — wrote about the testimony.

The testimony "still has serious concerns with internal components and focuses heavily on the science," Greenwood reportedly penned. "Because it doesn't reflect the coordinated IC position, or the administration's position, there is no way this can be cleared ahead of the hearing."

Although Schoonover's written testimony was not received by the House Intelligence Committee, an aide from the panel confirmed that two other intelligence officers — who both testified on Wednesday — were allowed to submit their written testimonies.

The National Security Council criticized Schoonover's assertions on the dangers posed by climate change with written comments on his draft testimony. "This is not objective testimony at all," one comment read, an individual familiar with the document told the Post. "It includes lots of climate alarm propaganda that is not science at all. I am embarrassed to have this go out on behalf of the executive branch of the Federal Government."

Norman Ornstein, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise, told the Times that the White House's decision to prevent climate scientists from entering a testimony into the Congressional record was a rare one. "I have never heard of basic facts being deleted from or blocked from testimony," he said.

Francesco Femia, chief executive of the Council on Strategic Risks, condemned the move as "dangerous and unacceptable." "This is an intentional failure of the White House to perform a core duty: inform the American public of the threats we face. It's dangerous and unacceptable," she told the Post in an email. "Any attempt to suppress information on the security risks of climate change threatens to leave the American public vulnerable and unsafe."

Newsweek reached out to the Trump administration for comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.

Donald Trump Climate Change
US President Donald Trump (C) speaks before signing the Energy Independence Executive Order at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Headquarters in Washington, DC, March 28, 2017, with Vice President Mike Pence (L) and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt (R). The White House blocked climate change testimony this week because it did not "jibe" with the Trump administrations' views. Getty/Jim Watson