Actor Robert Redford is savaging President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump defends indicted GOP congressman House to vote Thursday on holding Bannon in contempt Youngkin calls for investigation into Loudoun County School Board amid sexual assault allegations MORE and congressional Republicans' tax-reform push, saying the effort would gut protections for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) by opening it up to oil exploration and drilling.
In an op-ed published in Time magazine on Monday, Redford, 81, blasted the tax overhaul as a "dirty deal" with a little-noticed provision that would allow oil drilling in 1.5 million acres of the refuge in Alaska.
"They are claiming to pay for proposed tax cuts by charging oil companies $100 million a year to mine the Refuge but we all know what’s really going on," he wrote. "$100 million dollars sounds great, but don’t be fooled. It won’t even pay the interest on our new debt for even a single day."
Senate Republicans approved their version of a sweeping tax overhaul earlier this month. That measure included a provision that would open up a section of ANWR to drilling.
Republicans have long championed the prospect of opening the refuge up for drilling. The inclusion of the provision in the Senate's tax bill helped to secure the vote of Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiOvernight Health Care — Presented by Carequest — FDA moves to sell hearing aids over-the-counter Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by the American Petroleum Institute — Manchin, Tester voice opposition to carbon tax Rachel Levine sworn in as first openly transgender four-star officer in health corps MORE (R-Alaska), who has since been named to the conference committee charged with reconciling the differences in the House and Senate tax bills.
In his op-ed, Redford, a trustee of the Natural Resources Defense Council, called for opponents of the bill to take swift action by warning members of Congress that they will be held responsible if they allow the ANWR provision to go through.
"It’s a dirty deal — but it’s not a done deal," Redford wrote. "Republicans are scrambling to get their tax scam out of Congress and onto Trump’s desk by Christmas. I believe we can still stop it — but we’ve got days, not weeks."