Science, not Congress, should be the decision-maker when it comes to endangered and threatened species.
Yet the U.S. House just passed H.R. 6784 - a bill seeking to remove federal Endangered Species Act protections for all gray wolves in the Lower 48 with the exception of the critically endangered Mexican gray wolf.
In addition to stripping protections for most gray wolves from the federal endangered species list, this bill prohibits its judicial review thus preventing any legal challenge.
It was approved, 196-180, and now goes to the Senate.
November 13 — The U.S. House this week is expected to vote on a controversial bill that would remove the gray wolf from the endangered and threatened species list in most of the country.
H.R. 6784, from Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wis.), would remove federal Endangered Species Act protections for the wolves in the Lower 48 by the end of fiscal 2019.
While the return of gray wolves in the northern Rocky Mountains and the Great Lakes has been an incredible success story, this iconic American species still only occupies a small portion of its former range and wolves have only just started to re-enter areas like northern California, where there are large swaths of suitable habitat. By stripping federal protections from wolves nationwide, wolves in historically occupied areas like the southern Rockies and Northeast may never be able to establish viable populations despite suitable habitat and availability of prey. A national delisting for wolves would reverse the incredible progress that the ESA has achieved for this species over the past few decades and once again put the gray wolf at risk of extirpation.
In addition to stripping protections for most gray wolves from the federal endangered species list, this bill would preclude judicial review of de-listing actions, thus furthering a damaging trend of Congress undermining the ability of Americans to seek out justice and defend our civil rights, public health, and environment.
Science, not Congress, should be the decisionmaker when it comes to endangered and threatened species. Please urge your representative to stand up for wolves, the Endangered Species Act, and the rule of law by opposing H.R. 6784.