Pelosi, Schumer, Hoyer, Durbin Joint Statement on President Trump’s Decision to Remove Protections From Millions of Acres of Public Lands


Washington, DC – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (CA), Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (NY), House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) and Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (IL) released the following joint statement today after President Trump’s announcement he will remove protections from nearly two million acres of public lands:

“America is not America without its great outdoor spaces, its national parks, and historic monuments that Congress and past presidents have preserved for the benefit of generations to come.  To diminish our commitment to protecting the natural landscapes and historic places of this country from ruin by exploitation or pollution would constitute a breach of our responsibility both to those who founded this nation and those who will inherit it.  That’s why we are deeply troubled by today’s announcement, which would undermine the preservation of some of this country’s most important national monuments and would remove protections for more than 2 million acres of public lands – the largest such elimination in our nation’s history.

“In particular, Utah’s most cherished national monuments, including Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante, will now be under threat as a result of President Trump’s order.  Many of these are sacred land to Native Americans, and they will now be put at risk of desecration and looting.  We must not allow this Administration to dismantle the protections that have been built for more than a century since Congress passed the Antiquities Act in 1906.  We will continue to work across the aisle to build support among those who care deeply about the conservation of open spaces, the preservation of historic monuments, and the cleanliness of our air and water for efforts to push back against this executive order.”

Earlier this year, Pelosi, Hoyer, Schumer, and Durbin sent a letter to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke urging him to reject efforts to shrink or eliminate national monuments. You can read the letter here.