Cheney blasts court decision to place grizzly bears back on endangered species list


House Republican Conference Chairwoman Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) blasted a U.S. District Court ruling that restored Endangered Species Act protections for grizzly bears, arguing the decision was based on “excessive litigation by radical environmentalists” instead of data. 

The Wyoming Republican said she’ll work to remove the protections for the species, adding the bears’ population numbers have made a full recovery. 

“The court-ordered relisting of the grizzly was not based on science or facts, but was rather the result of excessive litigation pursued by radical environmentalists intent on destroying our Western way of life,” she said in a statement.  

“The thriving grizzly population within the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem should be celebrated as a conservation success, with Wyoming investing significant resources in grizzly bear recovery and management since 2003.”

{mosads}According to Cheney, placing the bears on the endangered species list — which prevents hunters from targeting the animals — could have a negative impact on the ecosystem. 

“The ruling that forced today’s action was both needless and harmful to the ecosystem, which is why I introduced legislation earlier this year to reinstate the original, science-based decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to delist the grizzly and prevent future court action on the delisting, returning management of the grizzly back to the state where it belongs,” she continued. 

“I will continue working with my colleagues in Congress and the experts in Wyoming to ensure proper management of the wildlife in our state and prevent further federal overreach into our daily lives.”

Her comments come in the wake of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s announcement Tuesday it would comply with the court order. 

Conservation groups and Native American tribes filed the lawsuit in 2017 after the bears were taken off the list, arguing it was premature to remove their ESA protections. 

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