The United States of America is a land of laws, and Americans value the rule of law above all. Why, then, has our Congress allowed the president and the executive branch to take on near-dictatorial power? How is it that we have a president who will not enforce some laws and who encourages faceless, nameless bureaucrats to manage public lands as if the millions of acres were owned by agencies such as the Bureau of Land Management and the Department of Energy? In Nevada, the lack of enforcement of immigration laws and the draconian rule of the BLM are damaging the economy, lowering the standard of living and inhibiting natural economic growth. The only way to change these circumstances is to bring to Washington a president who will rein in the federal government and get Congress to do its job. It’s not that we don’t have talented people in D.C. It’s that we have no leadership there.
The BLM controls over 85 percent of the land in Nevada. In the rural areas, those who for decades have had access to public lands for ranching, mining, logging and energy development are forced to deal with arbitrary and capricious rules that are influenced by special interests that profit from the D.C. rule-making and who fill the campaign coffers of Washington politicians. Far removed from the beautiful wide open spaces of Nevada, bureaucrats bend to the influence that is closest to them. Honest, hardworking citizens who seek freedom and economic independence must beg for deference from a federal government that is more intent on power and control than it is in serving the citizens of the nation. In and around Clark County, the situation is even worse.
Because the BLM is so reluctant to release land to local disposition in Nevada, the cost of land has skyrocketed and the cost of living has become an impediment to growth. Where are the city and county to get the land for schools, roads, parks and other public use areas if they have to beg Washington for the land and then pay a premium price for it? How are people who see a future in Nevada to find housing and employment if the federal government is inhibiting economic development? How are businesses to find the employees to fill the jobs that could be created if there were better leadership in Washington? Unfortunately, many of the jobs are filled by those who came to this country illegally.
Above, Mr. Trump is critical of the BLM because they are "so reluctant to release land to local disposition." However, in an interview with Petersen's Hunting just 10 days later, Trump comes out firmly against land transfers. Which Trump will we get if he's President? His and his son's interview with that mag indicate the Boone & Crockett boys will be in and the cowboys will be left out on the street with their hats in their hands.
Not long after receiving my appointment at Interior, the NRA invited me to a business lunch. Given their position on gun control I figured I'd be with friends. The first issue they brought up was they wanted more BLM lands for target shooting. The second issue was their concern that livestock grazing was damaging millions of acres of wildlife habitat. Things tensed up a bit. When I got through sharing my thoughts, they dropped the issue immediately.
My point is these east-coast, D.C. hunting groups are no friend to advocates of multiple-use. Generally, they are in favor of environmental designations solely for the benefit of wildlife, and in their minds that means excluding other uses...except for hunting. Mr. Trump's son is on the board of Boone & Crockett, appears to be cut from that cloth, and his dad thinks he would make a great Secretary of Interior.