CORE Act has broad local support from a variety of stakeholders, but Tipton still won’t support it
As Colorado Public Lands Day approaches this weekend, the Post Independent Editorial Board is calling on Congressman Scott Tipton to put partisan politics aside and support a bill that would protect the Thompson Divide. The CORE Act is “the result of broad-based local community support that included a variety of interests — strange bedfellows as they were once described — not just environmentalists.” Tipton likes to tout himself as a protector of public lands, saying it’s his “priority in Congress” – but after one look at his miserable record, it’s no surprise that the Congressman is refusing to stand with his constituents in protecting the Divide.
This latest criticism comes after local community leaders wrote an op-ed last month urging Congressman Tipton to stop “politicking” and support the public lands package. Tipton has failed to listen to Western Coloradans on the issue, they wrote, and “When he has engaged it’s been on behalf of Texas oil companies rather than the communities he was elected to represent.”
“When it comes to public lands, will Congressman Tipton side once again with his special interest backers or will he finally summon the courage to stand with the Western Coloradans he was elected to represent?” asked DCCC Spokesperson Brooke Goren.
By The Post Independent Editorial Board
More than a dozen years ago, an unusual coalition of ranchers, outdoorsmen, recreationists, local government leaders and environmentalists banded together to try to prevent oil and gas development in the Thompson Divide area.
…The latest attempt by U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado to do that — as part of the comprehensive Colorado Outdoor Recreation Economy (CORE) Act — is worthy of that broad-based political support.
…Some in the energy industry would have you believe that the decisions already made to protect the Thompson Divide came out of Washington during the Obama administration as a result of lobbying from environmentalists.
But the reality is that those decisions were made as a result of broad-based local community support that included a variety of interests — strange bedfellows as they were once described — not just environmentalists.
They came together for a common purpose because, what exists on top across the landscape of the Thompson Divide region is far more valuable in so many different ways compared to what lies beneath the surface.
…It’s time for our county commissioners to get behind this important final piece of the Thompson Divide protection puzzle, and to encourage our congressional representatives, Rep. Scott Tipton and Sen. Cory Gardner, to support the CORE Act when it (hopefully, at long last) comes up for respective votes in the House and Senate.