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Trust Index: Harris claims Trump White House removed ‘climate change’ from website

Vice President Mike Pence is reflected in the plexiglass barrier as Democratic vice presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., answers a question during the vice presidential debate Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020, at Kingsbury Hall on the campus of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Morry Gash, Pool) (Morry Gash)

During the first and only scheduled debate between Vice President Mike Pence and Sen. Kamala Harris, the Democratic senator claimed the White House removed references to climate science from its website after President Donald Trump took office in 2017.

″Did you know this administration took the words science off their website and then took the phrase climate change off the website? We have seen a pattern with this administration, which is that they don’t believe in science," Harris said during the debate.

In the final days of the Obama administration, one of the issues listed on whitehouse.gov was “climate change.”

Soon after President Trump was inaugurated, the list of issues changed on the website. We saw “America First Energy Plan” but not “climate change."

Even though climate change or climate science were not on the site when President Trump took over as commander in chief, it’s important to point out that whitehouse.gov started as a blank slate with the new administration.

Changes to an incoming president’s online presence are routine and typically reflect the differences between the two leaders' priorities. The News4Jax Trust Index team rates this statement as “Be Careful,” reminding voters that even though the statement is true, it’s important to view the claim in context.

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Tarik anchors the 4, 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. weekday newscasts and reports with the I-TEAM.