In a press release, the advocacy group Republicans for Environmental Protection bristled at the Chamber's apparent swipe at creationists, and what the group called "a cynical attempt to pit science against religion."
"The Scopes trial is a false comparison. Regardless of what one believes about the earth's origins, the facts about the global carbon cycle do not change. Excess carbon is stored away in coal and oil deposits. By burning large quantities of coal and oil, we release that excess carbon back into the atmosphere, upsetting the natural balance," said David Jenkins, the group's vice president for government and political affairs. "The chamber's efforts are both imprudent and impious."
Earlier this year, Mr. Jenkins penned an article titled "God’s Climate Plan" [PDF], which argues that Christians should be concerned about climate change.
If the Chamber is indeed taking a shot at creationism, they're probably alienating many core supporters. According to a 2008 Gallup poll, some 60 percent of Republicans believe that humans were created "as is" within the last 10,000 years, compared with 38 percent of Democrats. This belief is soundly refuted by the overwhelming empirical evidence that shows that humans evolved over millions of years.
But if you flip the Chamber's analogy – comparing pundits who reject the science of climate change to those who reject the science of evolution – the comparison becomes decidedly apt.