Friday, December 09, 2016

New monuments defended

President Obama’s “careful use” of federal law in designating two national monuments in New Mexico likely would withstand any attempt by President-elect Trump to abolish them, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell said Thursday. Jewell defended Obama’s decision to designate the 496,000-acre Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument in southern New Mexico as “an area that warrants protection” because of historical and tribal significance. Obama also designated the 243,000-acre Rio Grande del Norte National Monument in Taos County under the 110-year-old Antiquities Act, which allows presidents to create monuments by presidential proclamation. Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, head of the House Committee on Natural Resources, has criticized Obama’s designation of 28 national monuments as an excessive use of power and has called on Trump to trim or abolish some monuments. No president has undone monument designations made by a previous president, “so it has not been legally tested,” Jewell said after touring the Sky City Community School, an Acoma Pueblo elementary school. “We do believe that the process that we’ve gone through, and the careful use of the Antiquities Act by President Obama, will stand the test of time,” said Jewell, whose tenure will end when Trump is inaugurated Jan. 20. The Antiquities Act has been used by 16 presidents since it was passed in 1906, Jewell said. “I think this is an important tool that most presidents would not choose to give up or to modify, but I can’t speculate on what might happen next,” she said. New Mexico Sens. Martin Heinrich and Tom Udall, and Rep. Ben Ray Luján, all Democrats, have said they will defend the monuments from any attempts to abolish them. But Rep. Steve Pearce, the state’s only Republican member of Congress, has said the size of the Organ Mountains monument should be reduced. He previously sought a 60,000-acre monument. Jewell planned to visit Las Cruces today, where she is expected to seek public support for the Organ Mountains monument...more

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I recall at the Organ Mnt. public meeting in Las Cruces where Jewell presided, monument supporters were bused in. Jewell called for a show of hands (as in majority-mob rule) and "the right" fell for it. The left side of the room was packed and the right side had some of them amongst the people for property rights. The left had more hands and she pronounced the monument had it. That is not the way a republican representative government works and I should of protested it then.It brushed of the rights of the minority as if we didn't matter.
There is no left and right , there is only wrong and right.