U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources (ENR), delivered the following remarks at a business meeting to consider the nomination of Ms. Tracy Stone-Manning to be director of the Bureau of Land Management.
To watch the full business meeting, click here.
Senator Barrasso’s remarks:
“We have heard a lot today about how completely disqualified Tracy Stone-Manning is to run the Bureau of Land Management.
“As you’ve heard from so many of our members, this is a critically important agency – especially for those of us from Western states.
“It manages almost one-eighth of the landmass of the United States.
“The Bureau of Land Management is responsible for more than 18 million acres of land in my home state of Wyoming.
“That is more land than the entire state of West Virginia is under control of the federal government in Wyoming.
“But it’s not just like that in my state.
“The agency manages over 12 million acres of public land in Arizona.
“48 million acres of public land in Nevada.
“8 million acres of public land in Colorado.
“8 million acres in Montana.
“It’s like this in so many of our states.
“The agency is also responsible for hundreds of millions of acres of mineral land below the surface and it’s critical to America’s energy independence.
“Included in the land it manages is almost 65 million acres of federal forests.
“As we have heard, Tracy Stone-Manning helped plan this tree spiking; she sent the threatening letter to the U.S. Forest Service; she did not cooperate with federal investigators, only testified when she received immunity; and lied to our committee about it.
“We’ve heard about the organizations that support her.
“Well, the Dallas Safari Club and the Houston Safari Club, which each represent thousands of outdoorsmen and women, have reversed their support and now publically oppose her nomination.
“This isn’t just about groups that work with the agency or even the people who enjoy our public lands, it’s about all the employees at the Bureau of Land Management.
“How can the men and women who work at this important agency respect Tracy Stone-Manning knowing she threatened their colleagues at the U.S. Forest Service?
“President Obama’s head of BLM agrees and now opposes her nomination.
“It’s not clear her radical views have changed.
“I say that because in 2018, in an article about Western wildfires – and we’ve had debates in this committee on what we can do to prevent Western wildfires – her husband had some thought.
“Her husband, Richard Manning, in 2018 wrote in Harpers that firefighters should let homes built in forests burn.
“He said, ‘There’s a rude and satisfying justice,’ he writes, ‘in burning down the house of someone who builds in the forest.’
“Ms. Stone-Manning cannot be held fully responsible for the views of her husband, but last September she endorsed them.
“In a tweet, she called her husband’s comments a ‘clarion call.’
“This isn’t thirty years ago.
“This was ten months ago.
“Tracy Stone-Manning endorsed her husband’s call to action that homes in the forest should be allowed to burn.
“We cannot let her lead an agency responsible for fighting forest fires on federal lands.
“In closing, Mr. Chairman, President Biden has made the threat of domestic terrorism a focus of his administration.
“His National Security Council recently released a strategy to address domestic terrorism, which specifically includes the threat of domestic environmental terrorists.
“How can we confirm someone who admitted to conspiring with terrorist?
“Each of the senators on this committee need to consider carefully if they want their names associated with Tracy Stone-Manning.
“All 10 Republicans on this committee has asked President Biden to withdraw his nomination.
“Tracy Stone-Manning should never be the director of the Bureau of Land Management.
“The Senate must reject this nomination.
“I strongly oppose her nomination and urge each of you to do the same.”