The Perversion of the Endangered Species Act

MSLF attorney Cody Wisniewski published an article today in RealClearPolicy, explaining how the Endangered Species Act has been abused in order to lock up enormous tracts of land under federal control:

The Yellowstone-area grizzly remains on the endangered species list, even though Fish and Wildlife officials say the population is fully recovered.

No good deed goes unpunished. Similarly, it seems no well-intentioned piece of legislation is ever used as intended. This could not be more true than when it comes to the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (“ESA”). In 1972, then-President Nixon charged Congress with establishing a “stronger law to protect endangered species of wildlife.” President Nixon wanted the federal government to be able to step in earlier to aid in the recovery of endangered species and, for the first time, to make “shooting, trapping, or other taking of endangered species,” a federal offense.

Congress responded to the president with the ESA — mission accomplished, or so they thought. It is clear from the President Nixon’s message, the statements made by members of Congress, and the language of the ESA itself, that the ESA’s well-intentioned goal was to allow the federal government to step in and aid in the recovery of an endangered or threatened species, and then to return management of the species back to the state, which properly has jurisdiction over the affairs within its borders. Neither President Nixon nor Congress could have predicted what the ESA has become today.

CLICK HERE to read the full article at RealClearPolicy.

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Wyoming Ranchers and Farmers Now Endangered, Not the Grizzlies

Keeping a family farm, sheep or cattle ranch profitable is a difficult enough without special interest groups making it harder. The grizzly bear was once an endangered species, but in 2017 the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service found the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem’s grizzly population exceeded scientists’ minimum goals for the powerful predator. It had fully recovered. The agency tried to remove the animal from the endangered list, but was sued in Crow Indian Tribe v. United States of America. More recently, environmental groups also got involved trying to prevent delisting of the grizzly.

Hunting Guide’s Killing Raises Stakes in Grizzly Case

U.S. District Court Judge Dana Christensen issued a decision in late September invalidating the delisting of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem grizzly bear and returning the bear to the endangered species list—contrary to the recommendation of 20 years of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service research, and the pleas of Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, and Mountain States Legal Foundation’s clients.

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