Florida Senator Marco Rubio, touted by some as the great Republican hope in the 2016 presidential election, thinks whether students learn sound science is irrelevant to the economy. Asked in an interview for GQ magazine how old he thinks Earth is, Rubio decided not to anger evolution deniers on the religious right:
“I’m not a scientist, man. I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that’s a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States. I think the age of the universe has zero to do with how our economy is going to grow. I’m not a scientist. I don’t think I’m qualified to answer a question like that. At the end of the day, I think there are multiple theories out there on how the universe was created and I think this is a country where people should have the opportunity to teach them all. I think parents should be able to teach their kids what their faith says, what science says. Whether the Earth was created in 7 days, or 7 actual eras, I’m not sure we’ll ever be able to answer that. It’s one of the great mysteries.”
Rubio is no doubt aware that Texas Gov. Rick Perry, himself a supporter of teaching “intelligent design”/creationism in public schools, could be one of his opponents for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016.