U.S. Reps. Jared Polis and Diana DeGette are up to no good this week, collaborating with a handful of other Democrats to strip language from the defense spending bill that delays the sage grouse listing for 10 years.
Republicans included the measure during committee proceedings last month based on an Army report that showed listing the grouse would cripple training operations at numerous military facilities throughout the West.
The Democratic measure to delete the language is one of 300 amendments lawmakers have thrown at the bill, which begins House consideration on Wednesday. And who approves what amendments will actually be allowed for consideration? That would be the Rules Committee, of which Polis is a member.
As we were saying, Polis and DeGette are up to no good this week …
The Republican language the Democratic Duo will try to kill would delay the listing while allowing individual state conservation efforts to continue. If the sage grouse is placed on the endangered list in September, which appears more and more likely, Pentagon officials say nearly a dozen military facilities would be subjected to severe restrictions including the complete shut down of gunnery ranges from February to June.
So it’s not just home building, ranching, farming, recreation, oil and gas development that would be crippled by the listing that encompasses 17 million acres of public AND private land across 11 states, it also affects our national defense.
Allowing the ten-year delay offers the grouse aggressive efforts by the states to actually save the bird, while allowing it to coexist with humans and economic prosperity.
Here’s what the federal government has learned about haphazardly listing a species, in some cases sub-species, at the behest of radical green groups without considering the widespread and disastrous economic consequences.
Polis and DeGette should abandon their efforts, lest the entire West go the way of the Northwest when the spotted owl was listed, or suffer like California is now because of the delta smelt.