Senator Larry Craig’s predicament is hardly news, so most of this story is now old news. U.S. Senate Environment Committee Member Fined for Lewd Behavior. ENS. However, the story describes some of the recent actions the Senator has taken against protecting our environment. This and the WWP blog have also chronicled his attempt to use the big range fires to advance an agenda that would not heal the land, but continue old practices of grazing that have played a major role leading us to their extremely flammable condition.

The ENS story only mentions his recent assaults against good conservation practices, but the Senator has boosted welfare ranching, the timber industry, oil and gas, and numerous polluters for a generation and a half. The latest news is that he is now resigning from his Senate Committees, places where he plotted midnight riders to sweep aside laws that benefited wildlife, clean air, and regulation of natural resource industries.

Many suspected until just the other day that Craig would force through some measure to guarantee that the awful grazing status quo would remain in force in the area swept by the giant Murphy Fire. Now with his Republican colleagues telling him to step down, there is more hope for our native wildlife, vegetation and land.

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Note: more specifically, Craig was asked and agreed to temporarily step down as the ranking (top) Republican on the Veteran Affairs Committee, Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, and Energy and Natural Resources Committee’s subcommittee on Public Lands and Forests. The last two are critically important for management of our public lands.

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About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University with specialties in natural resource politics, public opinion, interest groups, political parties, voting and elections. Aside from academic publications, he is author or co-author of three hiking/backpacking guides, and he is President of the Western Watersheds Project.

11 Responses to U.S. Senate Environment Committee Member Fined for Lewd Behavior

  1. avatar be says:

    yes, this is good news for the environment ~ if only public officials were held to such scrutiny for their “disorderly conduct” with public domain/land/interest ~ then maybe somebody would be learning something with things like this…

  2. avatar timz says:

    As much as I’d like to see him go I think in the long run it matters little. Otter will appoint someone to take his place that is just as bad or worse.

  3. Timz,

    Otter probably will appoint some as bad. However, Larry Craig had many years seniority on these committees. He was actually the ranking Republican member on two very important subcommittees.

    He also knew how to craft measures to do maximum damage, and he knew the techniques to sneak them into bills where they would often lie relatively hidden.

    Any replacement senator will be dead last in the U.S. Senate in seniority (this is true of interim appointments), and he or she may not be put on the committees that have so much influence over public land and wildlife as Craig’s were.

    So having him gone, would be flat out good
    (from my set of values) in the short to medium time frame.

  4. avatar sal says:

    I agree with Ralph. Craig has been a bain on the environment for decades and there is little chance that someone will be shuffled in for the interim that holds the clout that he did. I hope it turns out to be someone who can’t get much voice in committee. Otter doesn’t have many friends and he’ll have to get someone who can at minimum, function under scrutiny of the constituency in Idaho.

  5. avatar kim kaiser says:

    maybe him and barney frank can share a stall together,, peas in a pod,!!

  6. avatar mikarooni says:

    Barney Frank has far better taste than to fraternize with a Republican.

  7. Kim,

    I’m not about to get into their sexual preferences. It is their public land policies that are of interest to me.

  8. avatar Buffaloed says:

    I’ve always figured this would be his downfall ever since I was “eye raped” by him when I was on a date with my girlfriend. She wondered why this guy was just staring at me. When I noticed who it was I was kind of shocked. This was in 1987-1988 when I was 21-22 years old.

    I’m not sad to see him go but I do feel somewhat sorry for him in the sense that this has to be hard on him and his family to be publicly beaten up in the worldwide press.

    I have never respected his policies in the slightest and I remember him outright lie to people about the effects of logging on streamflows when they worried about living near the flood-prone Weiser River.

  9. avatar kt says:

    Larry Craig’s life was a lie.

    His environmental policies were dead opposite of scientific realitie” – and in that sense were lies, too. And they have destroyed so much – from clearcuts of old growth forests in the Payette to his manic support of destructive public lands grazing – and wealthy welfare ranchers like Simplot and Rep. Bert Brackett … Whenever Larry Craig said something about the environment and especially public lands policy or cows – it was said with the intention of maximizing greedhead exploitation of BLM and Forest lands.

    The pathetic “wife” and adopted “son” trotted out on occasion – they were acquired as cover for the Senate page scandal of the past … Everyone knew Mrs. Craig’s main function was to appear on a billboard photo with Larry during campaign time.

    These Republicans like Butch and all the Senators now expressing incredulity had to know, too. Of course, Butch can relate to cover-ups following run-ins with the law – recall the whiskey-laced snuff excuse he gave when he was picked up for drunk driving in Meridian in the past …

  10. avatar timz says:

    I have lived in Idaho for twelve years and have not been able to come up with a logical reason for the voting record of the people in this state and the people they continually elect to higher office. I don’t care how conservative you are it doesn’t mean you have to elect buffons. Maybe Ralph can shed some light on this for me because I’m at a loss anymore.

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Quote

‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey

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