Today's Missoulian features a great Letter to the Editor by Mike Phillips - A wildlife biologist, and House District 66 representative:
"This letter is in response to the Missoulian’s July 29 editorial on the court ruling to reinstate federal protection for wolves in the northern Rocky Mountains. Thanks for noting that the judge expressed concern over Wyoming’s wolf plan (which allows wolves to be shot on sight, anytime, across about 85 percent of the state), and the U.S. Department of the Interior’s curious and unexplained about-face for approving the plan. Wyoming’s reluctance to provide adequate protection for the species had stalled wolf recovery over the last few years. In many respects, the court’s decision is not surprising.
However, when the Missoulian accuses Judge Donald Molloy of “ignoring science,” the editors point their fingers in the wrong direction. The reality is that the Bush administration (and the Interior Department) has routinely ignored and politicized science throughout its tenure, particularly science involving endangered species decisions. One high-ranking Interior official was forced to resign last year when an internal review concluded that she rode roughshod over scientific decisions and repeatedly bullied her own staff scientists to alter their conclusions to fit the administration’s priorities.
A subsequent congressional investigation this year found that the suppression of science was even more widespread at Interior, and that perhaps dozens of endangered species decisions may have been tainted by administration politics. One must wonder if similar shenanigans have played a role with the federal government’s efforts to delist the wolf in the northern Rocky Mountains."
Mike Phillips, wildlife biologist and House District 66 representative, Bozeman