[WASHINGTON, DC] – Congressman Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) today issued the following statement in response to Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke’s recommendations to President Trump on several national monuments. Among the recommendations contained in Secretary Zinke’s report to the President are suggested changes to the management of the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument, located near Taos, including an expansion of activities which are currently not allowed at the monument.
“Secretary Zinke’s recommendations on the Rio Grande del Norte National Monument, Organ Mountains Desert Peaks, and other national monuments across the country threaten the legacy we will leave to future generations. The public has spoken out clearly in favor of protecting, and not changing or eliminating, our national monuments. I urge President Trump to reject the Secretary’s recommended changes and respect the views of New Mexicans who love the Rio Grande del Norte. In his report, Secretary Zinke suggests the administration will need Congressional approval for some of these changes, and I am ready to fight against any attempt to further undermine our national monuments – treasures that must be protected and preserved for generations to come.”