A political issue has reached critical mass when its natural adversaries throw in the towel.
That is what is happening in the United States on global warming, with President Bush and much of corporate America signaling they are through disputing whether temperatures are rising enough to portend future woes.
Of course, even if the disputes about the existence or potential ills of climate change are abating, that doesn't mean the global warming believers will now get the laws they want, or even find that candidates espousing their views win more elections.
In fact, the developing consensus that it is time to deal with the global warming problem rather than argue about its existence is likely to make it less, not more, of a salient domestic political issue.
The reality of Climate change has become conventional wisdom. Americans are all for "someone" doing something about it. Of course that doesn't mean they want to turn down the thermostat or trade the Land Cruiser for a Prius. The Pro-Life Community has spent years working to convince society at large that the unborn child is a human being. That has gained some traction, but the follow on belief, that Abortion should be prohibited by law has gone nowhere fast. Americans still " believe in abortion under only three circumstances: rape, incest, and "my situation."". Substitute "burning fossil fuels" for "abortion" and you aren't too far away from the reality. The oil companies and the auto companies are evil (after all look how high gas is and that Tahoe I bought for $10K under invoice only gets 13 MPG!). Hey, everyone agrees that we should use less gas, but not too many are volunteering. As long as Al Gore is a heroic figure sticking it to assorted faceless corporations he is going to be warmly regarded as a maverick hero. President Gore announces a new carbon tax (which means taxes on gas, electric, and heat) and he's just committed political hari-kari.