We had a great show last week, live from Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer’s office on Thursday morning- the day after this news came out regarding wolves from the AP:
Defying federal authority over gray wolves, Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer on Wednesday encouraged ranchers to kill wolves that prey on their livestock – even in areas where that is not currently allowed – and said the state will start shooting packs that hurt elk herds.
As the Governor and I were chatting in the hallway outside his office Thursday morning, former Montana Republican Party Executive Director Chuck Denowh walked by- and the Governor told us his message on wolves was simple. “S-T-A: Shoot their Ass.”
Republican legislative leaders, State Senate President Jim Peterson and MT’s Speaker of the House Mike Milburn, were also quick to praise the Governor’s move, saying this:
We would like to take a moment to commend you for your recent efforts to address the out-of-control wolf population we have in Montana. Our state can no longer afford to allow federa! bureaucrats and activist judges dictate how we manage the gray wolf. Your decision to defy this unreasonable federal mandate will provide a short-term solution to a longstanding problem.
To varying degrees, Montana’s congressional delegation also shares our collective interest in bringing wolves back under state management. As such, the Legislature has put forth House Joint Resolution 1 which urges the federal government to pass legislation that will result in the immediate removal of the gray wolf from the endangered species list and return management back to the states. lt is imperative that our state’s elected officials know where to draw the line when it comes to Montana’s constitutional rights.
Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer turned heads when he announced he was sending out state wildlife agents to kill packs of endangered wolves any time they attack livestock or drive down elk numbers.
Yet there’s been no immediate change in how the state deals with problem wolves, and Schweitzer’s office on Friday backed away from some of his most adamant declarations of defiance against federal wolf protections.
The governor’s natural resources adviser, Mike Volesky, told The Associated Press that wildlife agents had “discretion to use whole-pack removal” — not a mandate to do so.
Meanwhile, Wyomings newly elected Republican Governor says he won’t follow suit.
Gov. Matt Mead said Thursday that he still believes a “congressional fix” is the best way to resolve the legal issues over wolf management in the state and region.
Mead, in a brief interview, said he understands the frustration of Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer, which is shared by Wyoming and Idaho.
If there isn’t a federal fix, he said, there are some things the state can do short of breaking federal law.