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Bill to delist gray wolf passes House

Legislation reinstates a Trump-era rule and exempts it from judicial review.

Farm Press Staff

May 6, 2024

2 Min Read
Gray wolf
Gray wolf.Oregon State University

A bill supported by Western lawmakers to remove protections for the gray wolf under the federal Endangered Species Act narrowly passed the U.S. House of Representatives last week and is now awaiting consideration in the Senate.

House Resolution 764 by Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., would reinstate a rule approved during President Donald Trump’s administration and shield it from judicial review.

The bill, which passed on a 209-205 vote on April 30, would direct the U.S. Department of the Interior to remove the wolf’s protections.

“For far too long, farmers and ranchers have been powerless to defend their livestock from gray wolf attacks," Boebert said after the vote. "Rather than celebrating the success story of the gray wolf recovery, leftists and activist judges want to cower to radical environmentalists and leave this apex predator on the ESA list in perpetuity, preventing scarce taxpayer resources from going to endangered species that actually need help being recovered.

“The gray wolf is fully recovered and should be delisted in the lower 48 states,” she said. “Today’s passage of my Trust the Science Act takes an important first step to empower states and tribal wildlife agencies while putting people ahead of violent predators.”

In late 2020, the Trump administration handed down a final rule removing the gray wolf as a protected species from the ESA. However, in February of 2022, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California vacated the rule and the U.S. Department of Justice is currently appealing the decision.

“The weaponization of the Endangered Species Act by the Biden administration and extreme environmentalists has been unrelenting and deeply disappointing,” said Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Wash., chairman of the Congressional Western Caucus. “By all metrics, the gray wolf population has recovered.

“But instead of pursuing common sense, science-backed approaches to delisting, this administration continues to weaponize the ESA against private landowners,” he said. “I’m proud to support this legislation that delists the gray wolf and returns management to the states, while eliminating activist judges from the process.”

Source: Congressional Western Caucus

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