Alex Constantine - July 2, 2007
28 June 2007
Lake County News
Written by Editor
WASHINGTON – The day after three dozen members of Congress from Oregon and California called for an investigation into Vice President Cheney's role in the death of 80,000 spawning salmon, the chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee announced he will hold a hearing.
In response to a letter by 36 Democratic members of Congress, among them Rep. Mike Thompson, Chairman Nick J. Rahall (D-WV) released the following statement:
"This Committee has already begun examining the penchant for this Administration to favor politics over science in the implementation of the Endangered Species Act, which was highlighted during a May 9th hearing and in the resignation of the Interior Department's Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks over the fiasco.
"In light of the revelations being made over the situation in the Klamath River Basin, it is my intention to again convene the Committee to delve into the issues raised by the Members of Congress from California and Oregon. It certainly appears this Administration will stop at nothing to achieve political gain from natural resources disasters. Ultimately, it will be hardworking Americans and their healthy environment that will lose if we fail to act."
The request by West Coast Democrats came after a Washington Post investigative report found that Vice President Cheney instigated the damaging water policy that resulted in the largest salmon kill and fishing disaster in our nation's history.
The Post indicates that Cheney manipulated scientific evidence in order to win votes from farmers who would benefit from the diversion.
"I am pleased that Chairman Rahall is committed to getting to bottom of the vice president's involvement," said Thompson. "The courts found that this water policy was in direct violation of the Endangered Species Act, and the American public should know if their vice president caused science to be manipulated for petty political gain."