Trump administration backs Obama in national monument clash

ABC News | 7/26/2018 | Staff
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A dispute over acts of Congress in 1906 and 1937 has put the Trump administration in court — and into the unusual position of supporting a proclamation by former President Barack Obama.

Contrary to President Donald Trump's numerous efforts to shred Obama's legacy, U.S. Justice Department lawyers are in Obama's corner as they defend his expansion of a national monument in Oregon.

Trump - Administration - Opposition - Timber - Interests

That puts the Trump administration in direct opposition with timber interests that Trump vowed to defend in a May 2016 campaign speech in Eugene, 110 miles (180 kilometers) south of Portland.

However, that opposition may be temporary in a case full of ironic twists that centers on a unique habitat where three mountain ranges converge. It is home to more than 200 bird species, the imperiled Oregon spotted frog, deer, elk and many kinds of fish, including the endangered Lost River sucker.

Judge - Limits - Power - Government - Branches

A federal judge is being asked to consider limits of power among all three government branches. For the Trump administration, the case is about protecting the power of the president of the United States, even if it was Obama who exercised his authority under the Antiquities Act of 1906 that allows a president to declare a national monument.

During his last week in office, Obama nearly doubled the size of Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument in heavily forested southern Oregon, to more than 150 square miles (390 square kilometers). Commercial timber harvesting is prohibited in the monument except for ecological restoration, so logging companies and local governments were deprived of revenue from timber that was suddenly placed out of their reach.

March - Forest - Resource - Council - Advocacy

In March 2017, the American Forest Resource Council, a timber-industry advocacy group, sued the federal government in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, charging that Obama's expansion of the monument was unlawful. A group of Oregon counties that receive...
(Excerpt) Read more at: ABC News
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