Trump floats debate talking points from ex-EPA boss

By Brian Dabbs | 06/27/2024 04:37 PM EDT

The talking points, allegedly authored by former EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler, tout carbon dioxide reductions during the Trump administration.

former President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks Saturday at a campaign rally at Temple University in Philadelphia. Chris Szagola/AP

Former President Trump on Thursday publicly unveiled talking points praising his energy and climate record just hours ahead of his 9 p.m. debate tonight with President Joe Biden.

On his social media platform Truth Social, Trump posted a set of arguments from former EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler, who’s widely discussed as a possible EPA head in a second Trump term.

One talking point vows to cut carbon dioxide emissions.


“Under my Administration we will continue to reduce CO2 and focus on American made energy,” Wheeler said in one of the talking points.

A Truth Social post by President Donald Trump, June 27, 2024
A Truth Social post by President Donald Trump on Thursday. | @realDonaldTrump/Truth Social

Wheeler declined to comment to POLITICO’s E&E News, which could not independently verify that he authored the talking points.

Biden’s team immediately tried to capitalize on the post. “A desperate Trump posts debate talking points given to him by the coal lobbyist he put in charge of the Environmental Protection Agency,” the Biden campaign posted on X. Wheeler previously lobbied for coal interests.

The talking points posted on Truth Social also say that the Paris Climate Accord, which Biden rejoined after Trump abandoned it, sends “American dollars overseas to benefit other countries like China.” Another criticizes Biden for “shutting down US energy, canceling pipelines, [and] stopping federal leases.”

“Because of Biden’s climate and tariff policies everyone is buying Chinese solar panels instead of American energy,” says one.

The U.S. currently produces more oil and natural gas than any country in history. In 2023, U.S. crude oil production averaged 12.9 million barrels per day. The country is also exporting record levels of gas.

U.S. CO2 emissions dropped dramatically in the last year of Trump’s presidency amid the coronavirus pandemic. Since then, emissions have increased.