Tonight, Acting Bureau of Land Management Director William Perry Pendley is slated to speak at the “Rustic Cowboys Policy Dinner” put on by the Western Caucus Foundation — an industry front group known for its anti-public lands agenda.
In a statement, Western Values Project Deputy Director Jayson O’Neill said:
“This speaking engagement shows that Perry Pendley’s past advocacy to scrap all of America’s public lands is still very much a top priority. He told the American public that he could and would follow marching orders. Yet here he is rallying attendees at an anti-public lands front group dinner. We have to ask: Is Pendley following Trump and Bernhardt’s marching orders to appease a fringe group that wants to eliminate our public lands?”
Pendley’s previous decades-long stance advocating for the sale of America’s public lands have been called into question since his appointment. He responded by asserting that he knew how to “follow orders” while working within the Trump administration. Pendley was called a “foot soldier” who was brought in to push the Trump agenda — but his choice to speak at this dinner calls that title into question.
Pendley has a near-30 year record of anti-public lands stances, including previously calling for revoking monument designations and repealing the Antiquities Act. Pendley repeatedly criticized former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke for not going far enough with his illegal monument reduction recommendations. He even went as far as to say that Trump was ‘not fit to pull off Reagan’s boots.’ Pendley called the recently gutted Endangered Species Act “the pit bull of environmental law,” claiming that it did not rely on “good science.”