Jul 2

Wyoming GOP Senator Introduces Bill to Weaken Endangered Species Act

Barrasso Bill Politicizes Science, Would Limit Protections for Imperiled Wildlife

Washington, DC – Today Senator John Barrasso (R-WY) introduced a bill that would undermine one of America’s bedrock wildlife conservation laws, the Endangered Species Act. While the Act requires the best available science to be used in wildlife protection decisions, Senator Barrasso’s bill would subject wildlife protection decisions to political interference.

“Senator Barrasso’s bill proposes that we go back in time and reverse the incredible successes that we’ve had as a nation protecting animals and plants, and ultimately ourselves,” said Leda Huta, Executive Director of the Endangered Species Coalition. “Why on earth would we do that—especially now that we have an even better understanding of how healthy plant and animal populations give us clean water and clean air? Let’s do more to give our children and grandchildren a clean and healthy planet, not less.”

Although some members of Congress have been seeking to weaken the Act, public opinion research indicates that the law continues to maintain broad, bipartisan, public support. A 2015 poll conducted by Tulchin Research found that 90 percent of American voters across all political, regional and demographic lines support the Endangered Species Act.

The Endangered Species Act was a landmark conservation law that passed with overwhelming bipartisan support: 92-0 in the Senate, and 394-4 in the House. In 2017, more than 400 organizations signed a letter to members of Congress opposing efforts to weaken the Endangered Species Act, noting the law has a 99 percent success rate, including some of the country’s most exciting wildlife recoveries, like the bald eagles, humpback whales, American alligators, Channel Island foxes, Tennessee purple coneflowers, and more.

Scientific consensus indicates that we are in the sixth wave of extinction. The main tool in the United States to battle this human-caused crisis is the Endangered Species Act, which has been very effective in keeping species from sliding into extinction.

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Photo credit Flickr user Gage Skidmore.

26 Comments on Wyoming GOP Senator Introduces Bill to Weaken Endangered Species Act

  1. lia brody says:

    Plain and simple: the ESA has been successful and has had wide bipartisan support. Our earn is ailing – this is not theater. It’s not debatable. Science is not a fiction drummed up by the left to punish Christians. We must not be greedy and arrogant and out a few profits above global health/biodiversity/life support of innocent beings that enrich our world and promote national splendor.

    Act now. Don’t gut the ESA. Protect the planet. Have dignity.

  2. Jay Rutherdale says:

    Hands off the Endangered Species Act! It is working to protect species and needs to remain in full force and effect and should not be weakened in any way.

    • gary says:

      Apparently they have no scruples. Apparently they don’t even care if their own family members will be injured by this destruction! What a shame.

  3. Holly L Weaver says:

    I support the ESA as long as it addresses native species that need and deserve protection. I am against the list of non-native species that have no place in this act. Arbitrary addition that’s been pushed by Animal Rights activists to hamper and/or end the interaction of humans and animals is an abhorrent overreach of government.
    The Act was established for the express protection of the vulnerable numbers of native wildlife at it’s inception. The list has exploded to include any and all animals that the activists have the money to lobby for the inclusion.
    I do not support the list as is, now is the time to streamline the program.

    • Katie Cather says:

      Blaming Animal Rights or other activists epitomizes “arbitrary” and is irrelevant. Some iconic species may qualify for ESA listings because of their benefits to other species and ecosystem balances. A more realistic and truthful criticism should be directed toward those who kill wildlife for sport and trophies, which in turn plays havoc with ecosystems (as well as plants and insects) and may impact any species’ sustainability. Thank goodness for activists, most of whom do not have financial wealth but give all they can and volunteer to protect the ESA. May more species be added to ESA listings to stop the “bleeding” at the current unsustainable speed we’re racing along at–with our heads in the sands.

  4. Joan Glasser says:

    It is unconscionable that Senator John Barrasso has introduced this bill, when there has been ongoing political, scientific and popular support for the Endangered Species Act.
    We must in all integrity, allow for continuation of this landmark conservation law.

  5. Karen F Kalavity says:

    Federal protection is preferable to state’s protections…that is, unless Trump and Zinke get their way and gut anything that protects nature.

    We have got to protect our wildlife…
    A world without precious and unique animals is a sorry future.

    • gary says:

      prayer is always good, however God has turned much of the world over to us humans. We haven’t done a very good job. Have we! Always worth trying though.

  6. Connell Walker, Ph.D. says:

    CLIMATE CHANGE, THE CORRUPTION OF OUR ENVIRONMENT AND ESPECIALLY OF ITS ANIMAL AND PLANT LIFE IS THE STUPIDEST MOVE GOING. I DONATE TO EARTHJUSTICE, THE N.R.D.C., MERCY FOR ANIMALS, THE WORLD WILDLIFE FUND, THE A.S.P.C.A., AND INTERNATIONAL ANIMAL RESCUE; HOWEVER, ONE EGO-CENTERED POLITICIAN WHO THINKS HE/SHE CAN OUTLAST AND OUTLIVE A DYING PLANET MINDLESSLY, SOULLESSLY MAKES WHAT I DO HARDER THAN IT SHOULD BE.

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