During the standoff last year between the BLM and Cliven Bundy over Nevada’s complicated grazing fees system, Colorado ranchers could only watch it unfold, and cringe. It appeared that Bundy had spent too much time under that hot desert sun, and was a little cracked.
Okay, the dude appeared to be nuts, and Eastern liberals and their supporters in the media delighted in exposing every off-color statement the man uttered.
The result now is the viewpoint that maybe all western ranchers are irresponsible and might stop paying their grazing fees, so they should be threatened with the revocation of grazing permits.
Democrats in Washington are working to attach a measure to the Interior Department spending bill this week called the “Cliven Bundy Amendment,” which would revoke grazing permits to ranchers who owe back fees.
The 35-year-old author of the bill, Democrat Rep. Ruben Gallego of Arizona, claims his amendment would not target ranchers who failed to fix a fence or miss a payment or two, but this legislation is a dangerous and slippery slope.
We agree there should be consequences for a rancher who completely shirks his responsibility and outright refuses to pay any grazing fees at all. But that situation applied to one man, and it should be dealt with individually.
Passing an act of Congress to block grazing permits for all ranchers who do “not complying with BLM regulations” is nothing but a range filled with cow dung we don’t need to cross. At the first wrong move, we’ll be stepping in BLM bull$&#!
The Interior and the Environmental Protection Agency spending bill, the lifeblood of the West, also contains critical funding measures for public lands, water, and recreation. It would block the endangered species designation of the sage grouse, and ban harmful Obama administration regulations that threaten to shut down coal mining and raise electricity prices for all Coloradans.
However, the Interior spending bill got bogged down in the House this week because Democrats are insisting on a rider that would ban the Confederate flag in southern federal cemeteries where Civil War veterans are buried.