Barrasso: The Senate Must Reject Stone-Manning's Nomination to Lead the Bureau of Land Management

July 27, 2021

Click here to watch Ranking Member Barrasso’s remarks.  

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY) delivered the following remarks on the Senator floor about Tracy Stone-Manning being disqualified to lead the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

Barrasso is ranking member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources (ENR). 

Senator Barrasso’s remarks: 

“We have heard a lot today about Tracy Stone-Manning’s nomination is to head the Bureau of Land Management and how completely disqualified she is for that post. 

“As you’ve heard, it is a critically important agency – especially for those of us from Western states. 

“It manages almost one-eighth of the entire landmass of the United States. 

“In my home state of Wyoming, the Bureau of Land Management oversees 18 million acres. 

“That’s more territory than the entire state of West Virginia. 

“But it’s not just my state. 

“The agency oversees 12 million acres of public land in Arizona. 

“48 million acres of public land in Nevada. 

“8 million in Montana. 

“It’s like that all across the West. 

“Included in the land it manages is almost 65 million acres of federal forests. 

“The Bureau is also responsible for hundreds of millions of acres of mineral land below the surface. 

“It’s critical to America’s energy independence because a lot of energy is under those lands. 

“Tracy Stone-Manning has no business leading this agency – none whatsoever. 

“She helped plan a tree spiking in one of our countries national forests; she sent a threatening letter to the U.S. Forest Service; she did not cooperate with federal investigators, blocked the investigation, only testified when she received immunity; and she lied to our committee about it. 

“There is bipartisan concern about this nomination. 

“Bob Abbey, President Obama’s director of the Bureau of Land Management, said her actions ‘should disqualify’ her. 

“Bob Abbey understands the job and knows her involvement with tree spiking should eliminate her from any consideration. 

“Steve Ellis, who was the deputy director of Bureau of Land Management during the Obama administration and the highest ranking career official at the agency raised concerns about Stone-Manning as well. 

“This is what he said: ‘Much of the focus seems to be whether this is a Democrat or Republican thing, but the lens I look at this through is as a 38-year career person in both agencies, and that letter she wrote went to my Forest Service colleagues on the Clearwater.’ 

“He makes a very important point. 

“How can the men and women of the Bureau of Land Management – people who have devoted their lives to this agency – how can they respect President Biden’s nominee, Tracy Stone-Manning, when they know she threatened their colleagues at the U.S. Forest Service? 

“Conservation organization have begun to pull their support. 

“The Dallas Safari Club and the Houston Safari Club, which each represent thousands of outdoorsmen and women, have both reversed their support and now publically oppose her nomination now that they’ve learned this additional information.  

“Radical ideas are nothing new for Tracy Stone-Manning. 

“Around the time of the criminal tree spiking, she wrote her graduate thesis. 

“In her thesis, she actually argued that Americans need to have fewer children because children are a threat to the environment. 

“She even made ads to promote these ideas. 

“These are ideas you hear in communist China, not from the nominee to be director of the Bureau of Land Management. 

“Some Democrats have defended Tracy Stone-Manning by saying this tree spiking was decades ago. 

“Her radical views have not changed. 

“Right now, many states in the West are burning from raging, dangerous wildfires.

“Management of these fires has become a constant conversation at the Energy and Natural Resources Committee and on the Senate floor.   

“We actually discussed it this morning at the Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

“Tracy Stone-Manning has current views on this as well. 

“Her husband, Richard Manning, wrote in Harpers that firefighters should let homes built in forests burn. 

“He wrote, ‘There’s a rude and satisfying justice in burning down the house of someone who builds in the forest.’ 

“Tracy Stone-Manning is not responsible for the views of her husband. 

“But last September, as wildfires burned and we had hearings on those, she actually endorsed her husband’s views on letting the houses burn. 

“In a tweet, she called her husband’s comments a ‘clarion call.’ 

“This wasn’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. 

“There are currently wildfires burning in Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, California, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. All of these states have BLM lands. 

“This year’s largest fire, the Bootleg fire, has burned over 400 thousand acres, 7 homes, and more than 40 other buildings. And thousands of homes are still threatened. 

“This year, around 2 million acres have burned so far in Western states.  Last year alone, wildfires burned and damaged over 17 thousand structures. 

“How can Senate Democrats vote to confirm a nominee who has advocated to let the homes of their constituents burn? 

“These views are disturbing and dangerous. 

“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. 

“But he has nominated someone who admitted to conspiring with terrorists. 

“Every senator needs to consider carefully if they want their name associated with Tracy Stone-Manning. 

“All 10 Republicans on the Energy and Natural Resources committee have asked President Biden to withdraw the nomination. 

“We all voted against her nomination last week during a committee business meeting. 

“She conspired with eco-terrorists. 

“She lied to the Senate. 

“She still holds radically reprehensible views. 

“Tracy Stone-Manning should never be the director of the Bureau of Land Management. 

“The Senate must reject her nomination. 

“I strongly oppose her nomination and urge each and every member to do the same.”