In fact, that same local vs. east coast liberals talking point was the reason his Chief of Staff Scott Parker gave me when I stopped by the office this spring to ask him to support SUWA's proposal to make over 10 million acres in Utah wilderness areas. That is, such wilderness bills should only pass if Utah's delegation approves of it.
But then I saw this:
Bishop took the lead this week in trying to kill a measure to designate the Eightmile River in Connecticut as part of the federal Wild and Scenic Rivers system ...
...supporters of the measure - which passed the House Tuesday by a 253-172 vote - say Bishop is out to embarrass freshmen Democrat Rep. Joe Courtney. Bishop, a Republican, tried to send the bill back to committee Tuesday with instructions to amend the bill - a move used often by Republicans this year to kill measures. Bishop says he wanted to make sure there is language to protect homeowners and landowners.
The Day of New London, Conn., however, said Bishop and the Republicans' opposition to the river designation was to foil Courtney's attempt to pass legislation, a move the newspaper said was payback for Courtney's razor-thin win in November.
"After 10 years of hard, bipartisan work by local citizens, elected officials and environmental organizations to protect Connecticut's Eightmile River and its rural watershed, GOP clowns made political hay of the effort last week, following the lead of a Utah Republican and defeating the wild and scenic designation for the river," the newspaper's editorial said last week referring to a procedural block Bishop helped initiate. "It was just their way of getting back at Rep. Courtney."
Bishop says his effort was solely focused on protecting private landowners and he otherwise supports the state's effort to protect the waterway. Connecticut [Republican] Gov. Jodi Rell and the state's federal delegation all supported the measure.
So this private land owner protection routine is a new one. Bishop is trying to say that this would be like Kelo v. New London, which is crap. This is for wilderness, not a public-private development project like in Kelo.
Bishop, if you don't want Connecticut politicians interfering with Utah wilderness on behalf of the environment, how can you honestly interfere with Connecticut wilderness on behalf of private land holders? That's right, you can't