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House chairman invites Patagonia founder to testify on monuments

A House chairman has invited the founder of outdoor retailer Patagonia to testify before his committee amid an ongoing clash between the two over national monuments.

House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rob Bishop (R-Utah) wants Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard to appear before the panel to discuss the Antiquities Act in light of President Trump’s decision to significantly shrink two national monuments in Utah.

The invitation comes after Bishop and the Trump administration attacked Patagonia for the company’s criticism of the monuments order.

{mosads}Patagonia said “the president stole your land” after shrinking the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments, which were established by former Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama respectively. The company urged customers to speak out against the order and eventually sued Trump over it.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, who recommended the resizing, criticized the company to reporters, calling it a “special interest.” Bishop’s committee did the same, parodying the Patagonia message and claiming the company is “lying to you” and pandering to “wealthy elitist urban dwellers from New York to San Francisco.”

In a letter to Chouinard on Friday, Bishop said “it is apparent through multiple media accounts and appearances that you have strong feelings on the topic.”

“The committee believes that major public policy decisions involving millions of acres of public land should be discussed, debated, and considered in the light of day,” Bishop wrote.

“The committee also believes it is important to understand and allow for all perspectives to be presented fairly and respectfully.”

“We first learned of this invitation through press reports. We are reviewing the invitation now and will get back to the committee as soon as we are able,” Corley Kenna, a Patagonia spokesperson, told The Hill.

Tags Barack Obama Bears Ears National Monument Bill Clinton Donald Trump Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument House Natural Resources Committee national monuments Patagonia Rob Bishop Ryan Zinke Utah

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