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Push to teach “other side” of global warming heats up in Colorado’s Mesa County

A national group that thinks global warming is “junk science” and that teaching it is unnecessarily scaring schoolchildren brought its first petition effort for “balanced education” to Mesa County Schools on Tuesday night.

Rose Pugliese, an unsuccessful candidate for a District 51 school board seat in the last election, presented a petition with 700 signatures to the board asking that science teachers stop giving lessons on global warming.

Pugliese, a 32-year-old Grand Junction attorney and activist in Tea Party and conservative Republican groups, also presented a petition with 600 signatures demanding Mesa County schools keep political views out of classrooms.

Pugliese’s efforts have made her the poster girl for the group Balanced Education for Everyone and have pinpointed Mesa County as a national test case for keeping the teaching of humans’ influence on global warming out of science classes.

“It (global warming) is not a proven scientific theory. There is not evidence to support it,” Pugliese told the board, generating applause from about 40 Tea Party and other conservative group members who filled the room for the first school board petition battle over this issue in the country.

The climate-change deniers scoffed and shook their heads when a scientist