Former Interior Secretary Slams GOP Effort To Seize And Sell America’s Public Lands

by Claire Moser Posted on August 14, 2014 at 4:37 pm

Little Missouri River winds it’s way inside the Theodore Roosevelt National Park located in the Badlands of North Dakota.

CREDIT: AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast

Former Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar called out the Republican National Committee (RNC), the national organization of the Republican Party, on Thursday for endorsing efforts in some Western states to seize or sell-off of America’s parks, forests, and public lands.

Salazar said the Republican Party’s endorsement of public land seizures and sell-offs would “cause Teddy Roosevelt to turn over in his grave.”

Salazar joined sportsmen and business leaders on a media call hosted by the National Wildlife Federation (NWF). Speakers on the call criticized the RNC for passing a resolution in January endorsing proposals for Western states to seize federal lands.

“The nation’s public lands are the birthright and priceless heritage of all Americans …They do not belong to any one state,” Salazar said. He argued that President Roosevelt and his successors fought against the notion that our public lands are for private exploitation, but “that’s exactly what the RNC resolution proposes.”

Forty-one of NWF’s state affiliates sent a letter to the RNC this week requesting that they retract the January resolution. The letter urges the RNC to “stay true to the [Republican] party’s deep conservation roots and rescind this resolution to ensure the continued protection of public lands that provide so much benefit to our communities and for all Americans.”

…(read more).

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