Conservatives for Responsible Stewardship (CRS) applauds the designation of Bears Ears and Gold Butte National Monuments. The President’s use of the Antiquities Act was entirely appropriate and in keeping with the Act’s original intent. Affording these public lands extra protection is genuinely conservative, and that is true irrespective of which president makes the designations.
“Bears Ears and Gold Butte are both rich in natural and cultural treasures that need to be protected from existing threats, they are exactly the type of places Theodore Roosevelt’s Antiquities Act was designed to protect,” said CRS President David Jenkins.
“Whether looting, vandalism, or a host of other illegal activities, the threats to these important parts of America’s heritage are ongoing and serious. Preserving them is, as President Reagan would say, our great moral responsibility,” Jenkins added.
It is important to point out that the Antiquities Act, which gives the president authority to proclaim monuments, is a Republican invention. It was crafted by a conservative Republican, passed by a Republican Congress and signed into law by Republican, President Theodore Roosevelt.
Recognizing that Congress was often incapable of acting quickly enough to protect artifacts or natural areas from threats, those Republicans gave the president authority to safeguard these places through monument designation.
“Congressman, and notorious monument opponent, Rob Bishop and his cohorts in the Utah delegation are pitching a fit about these designations—especially Bears Ears—as expected, but these are the same radical folks who want America to give away its public lands, and who are hell-bent on totally upending the Theodore Roosevelt conservation ethic that has served our nation well for more than a century,” Jenkins said.
“We hope that President-elect Trump will support these designations, and continue the important work of preserving our history and keeping these lands great,” Jenkins said