Last week the Republican controlled House Rules Committee released a “continuing resolution” to fund the federal government past March. As I thought, the bill contains cuts to funding for endangered species (for those of you following at home, see section 1704). But it goes far beyond that.
The Committee has decreed, without a hearing and in defiance of the best and most up-to-date science, that wolves will lose all of their Endangered Species Act protection in Idaho, Montana, and parts of Washington, Oregon, and Utah (section 1713). The bill reinstates a plan that would legally allow states to kill all but 300 wolves in the Northern Rockies, a number that is not sufficient to sustain wolves over the long term. More than 1,700 wolves now roam the Northern Rockies. That means those who support this provision are content to see as much as 82% of the population wiped out.
How is this possibly related to the budget of the United States of America? When the Republican Party swept to power last November the repeatedly promised a new day -- a day in which, among other things, budget bills would no longer contain extraneous policy provisions inserted to avoid the normal legislative process. In their words: “We will end the practice of packaging unpopular bills with ‘must-pass’ legislation to circumvent the will of the American people. Instead, we will advance major legislation one issue at a time.” It looks like that new day doesn’t include wolves.
We need to fight this provision. Stand up and be counted here.
This post originally appeared on NRDC's Switchboard blog.