Senate confirms Biden’s controversial land management choice

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The Senate voted Thursday to confirm Tracy Stone-Manning as head of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) despite a decades-old tree spike incident that led the GOP to oppose her appointment.

In a 50-45 vote, Stone-Manning was confirmed to oversee an agency responsible for the country’s public lands, including their use in power generation.

Republicans objected to Stone-Manning’s confirmation because of a letter she sent in 1989 that mentioned tree planting, a tactic used to prevent logging that involves putting stems or trees. metallic materials in trees. This can both damage the equipment and cause injury.

In the letter, Stone-Manning, a 23-year-old graduate student at the time, warned that trees in an Idaho forest had been planted to protect them and that people would be injured if they attempted to reach them. tear down.

“This letter is being sent to inform you that the sale of the post office in Idaho has increased significantly. The reasoning behind this action is that this piece of land is very special for the earth, ”the letter says. “You bastards come in anyway and a lot of people could be hurt.”

The letter did not contain Stone-Manning’s name, but she admitted in court in 1993 that she had sent it. She did not write the letter, but retyped a message and sent the letter after an activist asked her to do so. She said she was not involved in any tree planting and sent the letter “because I wanted people to know these trees were seeded. I didn’t want anyone to be hurt because of planted trees.

Two men were ultimately found guilty of planting the Idaho trees.

Republicans tore Stone-Manning up over the letter and argued it showed she was unfit to lead the BLM.

“Tracy Stone-Manning is a dangerous choice to be in charge of US public lands,” the senator said. Jean BarrassoJohn Anthony BarrassoOvernight Energy & Environment – League of Conservation Voters – Climate summit chief says US must ‘show progress’ on environment Manchin and Barrasso announce bill to revegetate forests after devastating fires finalize rule cut HFCs LEARN MORE (R-Wyo.) Said in a speech on Thursday.

“At a time when America faces growing crises, Senate Democrats, each, are determined to uphold a candidate who has collaborated with eco-terrorists, lied in the US Senate, and continues to hold very dangerous views.” , Barrasso said.

Democrats have defended Stone-Manning, who previously worked as an assistant to the senator. Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterThree dead, dozens injured after Amtrak train derailment in Montana (D-Mont.).

Tester on Thursday accused his detractors of “character murder”.

“The truth is, Tracy Stone-Manning didn’t do anything wrong. And in fact, the people who went to jail went to jail because of Tracy Stone-Manning. But that aside, the assassination of character is not something we should put up with in this body, he said during a speech on the ground.

“She’s been a leader. She’s someone who knows how to bring people together. She’s someone who has used our public lands. She’s someone who knows how precious these public lands are. C ‘is someone who will do a great job as head of the BLM, “he added.

Republicans also accused Stone-Manning of misleading lawmakers after telling the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee in a questionnaire that she had never, to her knowledge, been the target of ‘a police investigation.

They released a letter in July which they said came from an investigator into the case, alleging that a grand jury sent Stone-Manning a “target letter” stating that she was going to be charged but that her lawyer had negotiated an immunity agreement.

Stone-Manning told the panel in writing that she had agreed to work with authorities and that her lawyer had advised her to seek immunity.

Stone-Manning supporters praised his experience and leadership style.

“As the head of the Montana Environmental Agency, she has gained a reputation not only as a skilled policy maker, but also as an honest broker,” said the Senate Majority Leader. Charles SchumerChuck Schumer By refusing to raise debt limit, Republicans bet on Americans’ social security benefits Former Olympic swimmer pleads guilty to felony in Jan.6 case Pelosi invokes climate conference to push spending MORE (DN.Y.) said in a speech on Thursday.

“Some of our Republican colleagues have used his nomination to launch cheap, out-of-context attacks. Fortunately, no one takes these attacks seriously. Because of her exceptional qualifications, Tracy Stone-Manning enjoys broad support from the Democratic caucus, ”he added.

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