Divert Intel Funds to Study Global Warming?

This is a rush transcript from "Your World with Neil Cavuto," May 5, 2007. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: Well, some speculating today this massive twister has global warming written all over it. So is it a good thing that Democrats just passed a bill that will spend intelligence money to study the warming of the Earth? Well, my next guest says no. With us now Republican Congressman Pete Hoekstra of Michigan, who voted against this bill today.

Why did you do that?

REP. PETER HOEKSTRA, R-MICH., RANKING MEMBER, INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: Well, Neil, obviously we are a country that is under continued threat. We have an intelligence community that is focused on stealing secrets from other countries, their plans and intentions.

And now we are going back to what we did in the 1990s. We are shifting intelligence resources to politically correct activities. In the 1990s, we focused it on the environment, we focused on the nice guys. Spies don't recruit bad people. What happened is we were blind to al Qaeda.

Now when the threat continues to be real — continues to be real, here they go again. They are thinking about moving intelligence resources to study an issue that can be studied by a number of other agencies in the federal government. This is not a job of the intelligence community.

CAVUTO: All right. So when you have an issue like these tornadoes in Kansas and that this type of studying, some of the Democrats are claiming, would at least give you better warning or preparation for how you deal with them and hence on the same level as a terror threat, in this case, a Mother Nature terror threat, you are not buying that?

HOEKSTRA: No. I'm not sure exactly what the Central Intelligence Agency or one of our other intelligence agencies would add to the value that we already have in the weather service and all of the other Homeland Security Department. It just makes no sense. There are other agencies that focus on this.

Back — if you read George Tenet's book, I mean, the intelligence community referred to this effort in the 1990s as the "bugs and bunnies" effort. The intelligence community has no specific capability to deal with this issue that can't be found somewhere else in government.

CAVUTO: Congressman.

HOEKSTRA: We need to stay focused on the real threat.


HOEKSTRA: That is al Qaeda and radical jihadists.

CAVUTO: All right. So obviously, threats like tornadoes are not under that guise?

HOEKSTRA: Absolutely not, no.

CAVUTO: OK. Congressman, thank you very much. Good seeing you again.

HOEKSTRA: Hey, good seeing you. Thank you.

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