John Boehner does not want 500,000 beautiful acres in New Mexico to be designated a national monument. I mean, he does, but Obama wanted it more and, you know, fuck that guy.
This isn't about petty partisan politics, though. It's about national security! Or, at least, national security pork, and also survivalist rancher freedom from federal tyranny that's not approved by Republicans. Via Politico:
Speaker John Boehner said Wednesday that President Barack Obama's move to designate nearly 500,000 acres of land in New Mexico as a national monument could undermine security along the southern border – an argument disputed by the agency that oversees border security...
At issue is the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument, located in south central New Mexico. Preserving the 496,000 acres as a monument could generate $7.4 million in economic activity through tourism and other revenue, according to the White House.
But the problem for Boehner and other House Republicans is that the White House went around Congress to designate the area as a national monument through executive order. And Boehner's office said legislation in both chambers of Congress that would have accomplished the goal of Obama's proclamation included border security protections that were not included with the White House action.
Now, apparently Boehner and the House Republicans are convinced that the land—which "contains five mountain ranges with fragile landscapes, prehistoric rock art and more recent historic sites such as a training area for the Apollo astronauts"—will now become lawless territory for Mexican drug cartels and eye-legals because Obama didn't sign their lovely national monument-designating legislation with its provisions for scads more Border Patrol agents.
Customs and Border Patrol disagrees. "This designation will in no way limit our ability to perform our important border security mission, and in fact provides important flexibility as we work to meet this ongoing priority," the agency said in a statement. But you know who they work for.
Also opposed to the designation are Cliven Bundy-type ranchers in the area who "say it's a land grab that will interfere with their grazing rights" and worry about Mexicans, which is weird, since you'd think those ranchers would be more pissed about the GOP plan that nationalized the land and added more armed federal agents.
[Photo credit: AP]