tv Ryan Zinke Says He Will Address Sexual Assault Allegations at Interior CSPAN January 27, 2017 5:40pm-8:02pm EST
debate on the nomination of rex tillerson to be secretary of state, and at 5:30 p.m. there's a procedural vote on moving forward with his nomination. if the senate votes to advance the nomination we expect a final confirmation vote for the form exxon mobil ceo on wednesday. spirit montana congressman ryan zinke is the nominee for interior secretary. the senate natural resources committee held his confirmation hearing earlier this month. we will start with this introduction by montana senator steve daines. >> thank you big it is truly my great honor to introduce a fellow montana and and an american hero and a good friend of mine congressman ryan zinke and support his confirmation to the position of interior secretary of our new president donald trump. notice you have the entire
congressional delegation before you today. we have both montana senators, one whose republican and one who is a democrat. i first met ryan in 1979 when we're both high school students going up in montana. in fact we were in dylan, montana, for voice estate. ryan from whitefish high school and i was representing bozeman high school. he was captain of the soon to be undefeated state champion whitefish bulldogs football team pick is also president of his class. after high school ryan went on to university of oregon where he was a full scholarship starting athlete for the oregon ducks, their football team where he would when numerous awards for outstanding academic as well as athletic performance. and he majored in geology. a subject matter i know has served him well, is serving the people of montana. and then ryan enlisted in the
united states navy. ryan zinke as a u.s. navy seal commander whose assignment include the elite seal team six and part of that tenure was serving under general mattis as commander of joint special forces in iraq at the height of insurgent activity. i would like to highlight his experience as a seal. because navy seals never quit. they don't know the definition of the word because they never do. navy seals also don't fail. they die trying. and if that work ethic that ryan zinke brings with him to every mission takes them whether it's in the military, in the united states congress or at the department of interior. during his 2 23 years of service as a seal, ryan conducted special operations on four continents.
he trained and mentored thousands of men and women, 80 make sure our troops were as prepared and a safe is absolutely possible when conducting these no fail missions around the globe. he was also the guy who the navy called upon to go into units and see how they could be improved. whether it was looking at new advancements in technology is sore special forces could invade new landscapes undetected by the enemy, or redoing existing processes and at the budding new policies that our ground force commanders and headquarters could communicate more efficiently during combat, ryan zinke has always been a trusted leader of the most demanding missions. and he will be no different at the department of the interior. as the deputy and acting commander of joint special forces in iraq in 2004, ryan led a combined force of special operators through the streets of
fallujah, as a forward commander at the height of insurgent terrorist activity in what can only be described, and i quote, as a warehouse of death. ryan was charged with committing a strategy utilizing tens of thousands of personnel both military, civilian to advance our mission. and he courted with other branches, nations and government agencies to achieve diplomatic and military missions. ryan earned two bronze stars and many other awards for his service to our great nation. we should also be thankful to his wife lola and their children for their service. and i might add, apples don't fall far from the tree. ryan's daughter who is sitting beside him was a navy diver. his son-in-law is also a navy seal. following his retirement from the navy after 23 years of
honorable service to our nation, ryan came back to montana and he continued to serve. because ryan ran for and you want a seat in her state as montana's soul representative for the united states house. in fact,, he wasn't the first navy seals ever elected to the u.s. congress. ryan has been a strong supporter of the conversation us as well as responsible natural resources development and increase recreation access on our public lands. you see, ryan grew up 30 minutes from glacier national park. i grew up 60 minutes from yellowstone national park. we both understand the importance of our national parks. in fact ryan and i've shared a mckinsey boat together, flyfishing and what a montana's many blue ribbon trout streams. ryan is intimately familiar with the vast jurisdiction of the department of the interior because he has lived it.
he has seen his own hometown suffer due to bad government policies that hurt rural communities like libby, like malta, like whole strip that depends on our public land access. after all, ryan is a born and bred montana and who knows that we must strike the right balance between conservation and responsible energy developments. and he understands that a one size fits all policy, like we see coming from washington, d.c., never work for real america. ryan zinke is smart. he's got montana horse sense. he's the guy you want in your corner, whether you're fighting in the streets of fallujah for your life or fighting on the floor of congress for your livelihood. he listens and he fights for what he believes in. i have no doubt he will be a fighter for america, for our
public lands as the next secretary of the interior. thank you, madam chair. >> thank you, senator daines. appreciate your comments and sharing all that with us. senator tester, thank you for joining us here at the committee, and please if you will proceed with your introduction spirit it is indeed a pleasure and i want to thank you chairwoman murkowski and ranking member cantwell, distinguished members of this committee for allowing me to be a today because it is an honor today to participate to introduce a decorated navy veteran and fellow public servant, lucky enough to represent the people of the great state of montana, the treasure state, the last best place. before our time here, both congressman zinke and i had the pleasure of serving in the montana senate, albeit not at the same time. so i want to thank you again for answering the call to serve our great nation. i believe it is very important for someone who knows the west to serve as interior secretary.
the job of interior secretary is incredibly important especially today as america's public lands come under attack by folks who want individual states to manage them, which is the first step of selling offer public lands to the highest bidder. it falls on this committee to ask congressman zinke specifically about how he views the responsibilities of interior secretary and how he will push back on this administration with his perspective, his montana perspective, whenever necessary. things like public lands, keeping public lands in public hands for our kids and our grandkids. a very important issue at this moment in time. things like the deferred maintenance and backlog wreaking havoc on our national park system. things like laying land and water conversation fun, how to work with the congress and this invitation to ensure full funding to and issues like that visionary fund. as the gentleman pointed out, things like trust responsibility
in indian country and the ranking member as well, for america's sovereign indian nations. and, of course, resource development, how to responsibly manage our public lands for energy and resource development, and how to balance that with respect to clean water and clean air and wildlife and habitat that supports them. i am particularly encouraged by his support for protecting the gateway to yellowstone national park. just recently when a mining company proposed to drill just a few miles from the doorstep of this nations first national park, the congressmen join me and local businesses and community leaders to protect outdoor economy. of course there are issues the coxswain and i don't see eye to eye, but if you provide you with the answers that he has provided to me, i expect you will find that he is well-equipped to hold this post with accountability. as a westerner, i know what's at stake.
so i am honored to introduce congressman zinke to this committee. i trust that a navy seal as always will shoot straight. thank you, madam chairwoman. >> thank you, senator tester. thank you both for being here, and providing that introduction for our nominee. and with that, representative zinke, if you will come forward, and before asking you to begin with your opening statement at introduce your family, i will ask that we proceed with administering the oath, which is customary in a hearing such as this one. and then i'm going to ask three questions, again, customary to operations within this committee. so the rules of the committee which apply to all the nominees require that they be sworn in in connection with her testimony. so please raise your right hand. do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about to give
to the senate committee on energy and natural resources shall be the truth, the whole truth, nothing but the truth? >> i do. >> before you begin your statement, i will ask you three questions that we addressed to each of nominee before the committee. will you be available to appear before the committee and other congressional committees to represent departmental positions and respond to issues of concern to the congress? >> i will. >> are you aware of any personal holdings, investments or interest that would constitute a conflict or create an appearance of such a conflict, should you be confirmed and assumed the office to which you have been nominated by the president? >> madam chairman, my investment, personal holdings and other interests have been reviewed by both myself and the appropriate ethics counselors within the federal government. i have taken all appropriate action to avoid any conflict of interest, and there are no conflicts of interest or appearances thereof to my
knowledge. >> thank you. and final question, are you involved or do you have any assets that are held in blind trust? >> i do not. >> thank you, representative zinke. you may proceed with introduction of family and her opening statements, but welcome to the committee. >> thank you, madam chairman, ranking member cantwell, and members of the committee. and thank you also montana senators tester and danes for the kind remarks, leadership and continued service on behalf of of our great treasure state. it is an honor to appear before this esteemed the senate committee on energy and natural resources. before beginning my remarks i would like to introduce and recognize my members of them have join me today. my wife lolita who is also a member the presidents elect hispanic advisory committee. my two grandchildren, matilda and charlotte.
my daughter jennifer and her husband jack. and for the record i did tell my daughter, don't join the navy and don't marry a navy seal, and she did both. my sons wolfgang and conrad are back at school and hopefully studying today so they will not be with us. as the son of a plumber and the kid who grew up in a small timber town, railroad town in whitefish near glacier park, i am humbled to be before you as the president-elect's designee for secretary of interior. i am also deeply humbled because of great responsibility, the position holds to be the steward of our majestic lands, the champion of our great indian nations, and the manager and voice of our diverse wildlife. upfront, i am an unapologetic admirer of teddy roosevelt. and believe he had a right when
you placed under federal protection millions of our acres of federal lands and set aside much of it as our national forest. today, those lands provide americans the opportunity to hike, fish, camp, recreate and enjoy the great outdoors. it was on these lands that my father taught me how to hunt and fish, and the boy scouts taught me the principles of environmental stewardship and the importance of public access. it is also on these lands that many communities like the community i grew up in rely on the harvest timber, mines, that provide our nation with critical energy. without question our public lands are america's treasures and are rich in diversity. i fully recognize and appreciate there are lands that deserves special recognition and a better manage under the john muir model of wilderness, where man has a light touch and is an observer.
i also fully recognize preponderance of our federal holdings are better suited under the potential model of multiple use using best practices, sustainable policies and objective science. during my recent centennial, or during the recent sentiment of our national park service, i found myself at the ceremony at yellowstone national park, our first national park, established by congress and signed into law by president ulysses s grant on march 1, 1872. as i enjoyed the celebration under the famous rose bowl arch, i could not help but notice the words etched on the stone above, for the benefit and enjoyment of the people. i also could not help but notice on the plaque on the side. it said directed by congress. when i saw that i said this is the perfect policy of land that
our great nation should uphold. in order to have a great deeds and accomplish great things, both sides have to work together. higher purpose can only be achieved by both sides coming together for a higher purpose. in a nutshell, that's my commitment to you. if confirmed, i will work with each of you to ensure that our public lands reflect higher purpose so that our children's children, my granddaughters children, can look back and say we did it right. i almost met every member of this committee, and i understand that each state is different. i also understand that issues within your state are different, and yet different priorities. but i'm confident that we can work together to get the job done. when asked about what my goals
might be, i would say there are three immediate tasks. the first is to restore trust. and working with rather than against local communities and states. i fully recognize that there is distrust, anger, and even hatred against some federal management policies. being a listener and a listening advocate, rather than a deaf adversary, is a good start. second, it's to prioritize the estimate $12.5 billion in backlog of maintenance and repair of our national parks. the president-elect is committed to a jobs and infrastructure bill, and i am committed and need your help in making sure that bill includes our national treasures. and third, to ensure that the professionals in the frontline, that's our managers and rangers, have the right tools, the right
resources and the flexibility to make the right decisions to give a voice to the people they represent. as a former montana state senate and current congressman, i have learned a lot since i was a steal in the deserts of iraq. to a college my mission mission as secretary of interior, if, if confirmed, i know that i'm going to need your help. i'm going to need your confidence and even perhaps in your prayers. i look forward to answering your questions, and if confirmed, representing the interest of our great nation and giving a voice to all americans to include our great indian nations on how we manage, sustain our public lands, and the treasures they contain. madame chairman, thank you for the opportunity to appear before you and this committee, and i look forward to your questions. >> thank you, congressman zinke. and i couldn't see her when you were seated in front here, but i
would also like to recognize the representative from america samoyed who is here with us today, it's good to have you here. obviously a great deal of interest in that aspect of the jurisdiction coming-out of the interior department. congressman, i would like to talk about land management. you and i have had a good deal of conversation about the necessity to manage our lands and manage them well. if confirmed, you will be responsible for managing over 245 million surface acres, and 700 million acres of subsurface mineral estate. i think we both recognize that is a pretty weighty responsibility. over 1/5 of it is in my state, and that means your land management effort have an overwhelming impact on the state of alaska to we refer to the secretary of interior or
effectively as alaska's landlord. you are probably the most consequential member of the administration outside of the president in terms of issues that we work with. so i take this nomination very, very seriously. i have mentioned in my opening statements, we've had a number of disagreements and a very difficult relationship at times with this administration. you have acknowledged that each of our states are different. i have walked you through our map and try to outline why we are unique, why we are bigger and better and broader and faster and more complicated and more challenging than most others. so my question to you, there is broadly, is how will your approach to management of alaska's lands be different than
what we have seen? how will your recognition of the unique aspects of a state like alaska be different in these years going forward? >> well, thank you and thanks for the question. and as you know, as we visited with each other, alaska is different. and i recognize that here as a navy seal i spent time in kodiak and i spent time in the aleutian chain and i spent a lot of time in the interior. but clearly what happened is folks in alaska are upset. they feel like the management, they have no voice. if you're looking at the timber assets along the coast in the southern part of alaska, those timber assets, forest fires occur and yet we can't harvest at tree. inland, your pipeline is down 40%. and engineering wise there's a lot of issues when your pipeline, the backbone of alaska's energy is that low.
large and the great people of alaska need to be a partner in the proper development of those resources. >> we look forward to a partnership and an even partnership because when it comes to consultation, when it comes to truly listening to alaskans, it just feels we have fallen upon deaf ears. more welcoming dialogue is what we are anticipating going forward. when we talk about the resources of alaska and alaska's willingness to share those resources with the rest of the country and truly the world, one of our great assets is our oil reserve that we have up north. you mention the trans-alaska pipeline is running three quarters empty. it now carries about 500,000 barrels a day and it's not due to lack of resource, it's instead a lack of permission to access those resources.
are you, will you commit to a formal review of all of the obama administration actions that took resource bearing lands and waters in alaska effectively off the table including the decision that specifically prevented the leasing of those lands in those waters for development and determine whether or not they can be reversed. >> yes, i think the president-elect has said we want to be energy independent. as a former navy seal, i think i've been to 63 countries in my lifetime and i guarantee you, it is better to produce energy domestically under reasonable regulation than watch it be produced overseas with no regulation. i have seen the consequences of what happens when you don't have any regulation in the middle east. we can do it right, the background of our environmental policy has been niebuhr and i'm
a strong supporter of dnieper. we also need to understand we need an economy. look. if we don't have an economy of the country, then the rest of it doesn't matter because we are not going to be able to afford a strong military. nor are we going to be able to afford to keep the promises we've made as a great nation and we have made a lot of great nations. in education, to our children's future, to infrastructure and social security, all of that takes an economy moving forward, and energy is a part of that economy. in alaska, that is a critical part of that economy. alaska's different for reason. you are blessed with great resources. you are last with great recreation, a little cold in the winter, but it's not palm springs. >> you are from montana. you can handle it. >> yes, i think we need to be prudent and always, i think we need to review things to make
sure were doing it right because over time, the government keeps getting bigger and bigger, the bureaucracy gets larger and larger and we can't get something done. i think we do, as a a nation, we should look at everything with an objective eye to get things done. >> thank you. i will now turn to the ranking member. thank you for your willingness and obviously going to congressman and secretary of interior means a different kind of portfolio. i was hoping this first round because there's so many people who want to ask questions, if i could cover three issues quickly with you, then give our colleagues a chance to ask questions. first, obviously you representing the district that you do in montana have made a lot of statements about coal, and for the record i want to understand where you are. you believe the administration
does have a right and should have a review of updating information about our coal program? >> i think transparency is always important. any administration has the right to look at it. >> so you wouldn't stop the review that's underway now. >> i think a review is good pet i don't know the specifics of that review, but i think we should always look at our energy portfolio with an objective is because it's important. >> you don't have an objection to taxpayers getting a fair value. >> i think taxpayers should always get a fair value. >> including on coal. >> including our coal, wind, all of the above. >> thank you cama on the gao statement of a surety, making sure that coal companies have the coal capabilities just as other energy companies do, do you support that as well. >> i think on the gao, i have have not read the specifics, but if it's a question that involves
bonding, i'm from montana where we have decker, we have a lot of coal mines and strip mines and i think bonding is important. i'm also from a state that, in the 1800s, mind gold by going up and down streambeds and taking all the material and dumping it upside down. i don't think we want to go back to those days. some of the reclamation problems that we had still not repaired. as a teddy rate rose about, teddy roosevelt had the courage to look 100 years forward. i think we need to have the courage today to look 100 years forward and look back and say we did it right. >> i hope that was a great endorsement of a protection role. on the teddy roosevelt point, you've made comments, do you support making the land and water conservation program permanent. >> i do.
i think it has been important to montana, certainly in many states. i do think we should look at it, if you are in the gulf states. revenue comes from offshore and very little of it goes to the states that are affected most by the offshore industry. i do think we need to look at revenues and evening out the revenue source. i think always you should look at program to make sure more revenue goes to projects. making sure bureaucracy hasn't grown over time and lastly, i think think the states should have a say, where the funds go. more than we do today. >> that might lead me to go down a different line of questioning as it relates to making sure federal lands stay in federal hands as your colleague from montana said, but i want to cover the park area backlog and budget. as i mentioned in my testimony,
we base the 100 year anniversary, the teddy roosevelt deemed that you have struck is very important because as we mentioned were talking about billions of dollars to our economy from the outdoor access. do you think we need to go further than what we've done in supporting our national parks and getting rid of the maintenance backlog. >> i do. i feel very strongly about it because, as you point out, a lot of the national parks this last year are at capacity. we've had record numbers. looking forward, what do we do about it? a lot of it is repairing the roads, backlog trails and also looking at the public lands around the park to make sure that we look at those trail systems, to make sure that the restrooms are clean, to make sure the sewer systems work. when you're talking about a 12 and a half billion dollar backlog, i was in the transition office and oddly enough i looked at the park in front of the department of the interior.
the very part that everyone goes by every day. the fountains don't even work. they are and in need of repair. then you start asking, what about about the rest of washington d.c. well it turns out very few fountains work. then you look at the bridge. the memorial bridge that goes across to arlington. i guess that needs $150 million. we better get on it. we are out of time but i'll come back to this question because there's been a lot of discussion about your viewpoint and resolutions in platform and houseboats about federal lansing and federal hands. will come back to that. thank you. thank you for your service to the country and for your willingness to serve as secretary of interior. i also want to thank your family for their commitment and service and for being here. talk for a minute about a
balanced approach of multiple use. many different resources, and many different constituencies that you have to deal with the national parks, but also public lands, knighted native american affairs and on the bureau of land management, you manage 245 surface acres, 700 million acres and sub surface minerals. talk about how you manage that in a way that's balanced in multiple use. >> multiple use, in the spirit of roosevelt means that you can use it for multiple purposes. i am particularly concerned about public access. if i'm a hunter or fisherman, but multiple use also was making sure what you are going to do, you know you know and go in with both eyes open. that means sustainability, that means that it doesn't have to be in conflict if you have recreation over mining, you you just have to make sure that you
understand what the consequence of each of those uses are. it is our public land. what i have seen most recently is our access is being shut off, roads are being shut off and were all getting older. when you don't have access to hunting areas or fishing areas come a than it makes it an elite sport. i'm particularly concerned about the elitism of our traditional hunting, fishing, snowmobile. making our public land assessable and in the spirit of multiple use, single use if you look at the model of some of our national parks in some areas, i agree, there are some areas that need to be set aside that are absolutely appropriate for man to be an observer. there are special places in our country that deserve that recognition, but a lot of it is traditional uses what we find in
north dakota and montana where you can hunt and fish, you can can drill an oil well and make sure there's a permit. if you are going to do something that's more intrusive, make sure you monitor the water. everyone enjoys clean water and we should. i don't think that there are in conflict, i think you have to do it right. >> is somebody who likes to hunt and fish, i appreciate that answer very much but also we've had a real challenge with the dakota access pipeline protest. you and i have talked about it. state and local law enforcement has worked very hard to keep the peace and keep people safe, but we need federal law enforcement help as well. your case that will mean more enforcement. so, my question question is, if you are confirmed, will you ensure that law enforcement works with state and local law enforcement to resolve the situation, to keep people safe and to make sure the rule of law is followed if confirmed, i will
be a very busy man traveling. i will travel to utah, alaska, and north dakota. those are three problems that we need to resolve quickly. i have great respect for the indian nations,. last time the sioux nations all got together. i would say general custer would probably say that was not a good issue. if you look at that if you look at this, there is deep cultural ties. there is a feeling like we haven't been a fair consultant or partner. i think we need to listen to that voice and that's part of the trust. in north dakota, there was a lot of anger. there's a lot of mistrust. not everywhere, but enough where i'm concerned that we need to be
better partners, we need to work together as a congress. we all rise and fall in the same tide and we all love our public laanrtment of the interior as a secretary is to make sure that we have broad consensus of what we are doing. every state is different. my final question is one-size-fits-all. too often in federal government we see a one-size-fits-all versus empowering states and people at the local level. too do what makes the most sense , given their part of the country, i would ask you to just give your opinion on the one-size-fits-all versus working with states and localities and tribes to do what works across the country. >> i would characterize the view from the potomac is a lot different than the view from the missouri. you do need to listen to local
folks and state because they live there. the consequence of an action that is one-size-fits-all affects real people and i do think you need to have a voice. you need to listen and you need to make sure you involve the communities at the lowest level. again, in some cases, we have a lot of assets. i know a lot of rangers and there's a lot of frustration on the front line. they don't feel like they are empowered to make a decision. their kids go to the same schools, but when they don't have the power or the flexibility of their resources to make the decision and everything is four or five layers above, that is part of what we face. we need to re- incentivize the line, remove some of the middle management and get them out where they are necessary. that's the frontline, and that's from basic 101 as being a seal. if you if your frontline is not
happy, and that's the chiefs and the sergeants, but i can tell you the rest of the forces and doing very well either. i can tell you, the frontline of blm and the park service needs to be shored up. they need to have flexibility to make the right call. thank you. >> thank you. we will, next turn to senator sanders. i will advise committee members, we have always operated under this earlybird role and perhaps there's been some discussion about what really counts for early bird but i am going what the clerk has observed when members came in. senator sanders will go next. >> thank you very much. thank you for your willingness to serve. i have three areas that i want to touch on. president-elect trump had suggested, stated that his view climate change is a hoax.
i know that you are not here to be administrator of the epa or secretary of the energy but the issue of climate change is very important for issues that the department of interior deals with. his president-elect trump right, is climate change a hoax? >> the best answer is three things. first of all, climate is changing. that is undisputed. i'm from glacier national park. >> you don't have any more glaciers there,. >> i've seen glaciers over the. to my time, when my family and i have eaten lunch on grinnell glacier, the glacier is receded during lunch. if you could, is the president elect right? is climate change a hoax. >> if i could continue, i'll make it short. the second thing is managing. i think that's undisputed bowl.
climate is changing, man is an influence. i think the debate is what the influence is and what can we do about it. as the department of interior, i will inherit, if confirmed, i'm not a climate scientist expert but i can i can tell you i will become a lot more familiar with it and it will be based on objective science. i don't believe it's a hoax. i believe -- >> you do not believe it's a hoax. >> no. i believe we should be prudent to be prudent. i don't know definitively. there's a lot of debate on both sides of the aisle. >> actually there's not a lot of debate. climate change is real and causing devastating problems. next question, dealing with climate change, if climate change is already causing devastating problems, should we allow fossil fuel to be drilled on public land? >> again, we need an economy and
jobs. in my experience of, i've probably seen 63 different country. i've seen what happens when you don't have. >> i don't mean to be rude, i'm taking your answer to be yes we should allow fossil fuel to be drilled on public land. >> all of the above on energy. i am all of the above. >> will you encourage wind and solar on public land. >> i will encourage absolutely, all of the above. i think that's the better solution going forward. >> some of my conservative friends believe that the day should come when we should privatize the national park system. what is your feeling on that? >> i want to be clear in this point. i am absolutely against transfer or sale of public land. >> good. that's a clear answer. >> i can't be any more clearer. >> no you can. thank you.
i have had the opportunity in the last year or so to get around the country. i have met with many native american tribes and discussed this issue. i think it is not debatable that, throughout history, including to date, the united states government has treated the native american people with disrespect, has ripped them off, has our vacated and right now we have, in many treaties and reservations, people living in unbelievable poverty. incredibly high unemployment rate. youth suicide is unspeakably high. do you agree with that assertion and if so, what you propose to do to improve life for the native american people throughout this country? >> i have great respect for the great nations.
the gentleman behind me is from the great crow nation. i think there are three things. sovereignty should mean something. we say a nation's sovereign, it should have weight. >> you're right. sovereignty should meet mean something. what does that mean if you receive the nomination. >> i can tell you from the perspective of of a montana congressman, the bureaucracy within reservations far exceeds what the outside. perhaps at one time we viewed the indian nations as almost children like where we have to manage every aspect of their affairs, and it has affected their ability for self-determination. >> i agree with you. let me just, healthcare and education are serious problems on many reservations. will you take a hard look at those issues and try to improve the quality of healthcare and
education for the american people. >> yes i will and i take it seriously. i have been to lame deer and as bad as the va is. >> will some of us won't accept that. >> well indian healthcare is worse. when you have the lineup and only a few doctors and you don't see the doctor and the next day they come back and they don't see the doctor and they don't see the doctor. >> is not an issue you will address. >> i'm sorry? >> you will address the issue of healthcare? >> yes. >> thank you. thank you very much for being here today and your commitment to service this nation and welcome to your family as well. i was pleased to hear your comment to senator cantwell regarding making this fun permanent. i believe their most important
conservation program in this country, every state has been touched. every state has had iconic landscapes preserved for the enjoyment of generations to come and that is important. the economy in colorado was about $13.2 billion in billion dollars in economic impact creating over 125,000 jobs in our state. although it's a very important part of that, would you reiterate your commitment to me that you will work with congress to make it permanent. >> you have my full commitment and all three of the montana delegation voters voted in favor of it. it's an important program, especially in the west and in montana, it's, it's particularly important in public access. the checkerboard system out west has made it difficult sometimes to go between for service and blm and you need a bridge and they've been important in doing that. i would support that. >> thank you very much.
i've always told colorado people that we need have more colorado and washington and less washington in colorado. i think what we could do is take a little washington and make it less washington. perhaps we can cure some agencies by moving them out of washington. for example, if you just look at the numbers they use, the bureau of land management administers roughly 248.3 million acres of public land. 248.3 million acres. many of those are located west of the mississippi river. that is over 99% of land located out west. no question, having some headquarters out west would, i think, vastly improved improved and result in better policy for ranchers in landowners and constituents who enjoy this land it's a great example of how little washington understands about the west and how bureaucrats get in the way of how things work in the west and
the one-size-fits-all approach has failed the public policy. you believe in the notion of putting our federal workforce, at least portions of it closer to the lands and the people they affect? >> i think they should be closer and in some instances in utah are you have 67% blm, you can look at different management schemes on it. the department of has stewardship programs. there's a lot of tools that we can use, but i think the bottom line is the decisions often times are better at the front line. if you empower your people to do them. as they say in the military, centralized direction, decentralized execution, that means we should hold hold true knee bar and the values that we believe as a country. we should uphold public access, clean air, clean water, but how
you execute day-to-day operations sometimes, often times it's better if it is done on the front line. you live it every day. your commitment to work with me on moving agencies like blm to the west of. >> i am to look at our organizations across the board of what we are going to look like as a department 100 years from now. roosevelt, i keep going back to roosevelt because i'm a great admirer, but i think he did a lot of things right. about a hundred years ago, he decided to take a bold move, and it wasn't particularly supported in time, not by all parties, but he did do a lot which we live in the legacy of roosevelt today. i think we would have to be bold and look at what department of interior should look like 100 years from now too better manage the problems that we have coming and there's a lot of problem. no doubt recreation will be a bigger beast.
we need to make sure what we are doing is appropriate. we need to make sure we have clean air and clean water and those types of things. my daughter's children will look back and say we did it right. i think that has to be a goal that we all share. final question in the time remaining is this. if you go into colorado state capitol there is a line written that all the water in colorado flows out of the state. no water flows into the state. that's an incredibly important part of who we are as a state. i would like your commitment to work to protect private water rights when it comes to our water system, understand that it's dangerous for minnis appellees, but also to continue to work without some permits and water storage projects as we work with water conservation or the need to store more water in the west is real. we need additional help protecting water rights from the federal government and being able to store more water for the
future enjoyment and growth development. >> there's no doubt that water is a commodity and will be more important tomorrow. there is a saying in montana that whiskey is for drinking and water is for fighting because water is incredibly important across the west in almost every state. even michigan. my commitment is to work with you. party infrastructure bill, we have to look at water storage and better ways to use water and some of our aquifers are at risk on that. water, particularly if you are an ag community, the water is an issue today. tomorrow it will be a bigger issue unless we invest in the infrastructure and policy that make sense for tomorrow. >> senator heinrich and he will be followed by senator alexander. >> thank you madam chair.
congressman think he you said you oppose selling public land or turning them over to the state. on the opening day of the 115th congress you voted for a house rule rule that makes it easier to give away or public land based on the idea that those public lands have no financial value. how do you square the two things? >> the vote was a rule vote in the house. that was one of the many roles. i would characterize it as an indicator of how upset people are about our land policy at the moment. particularly in nevada, wyoming in some places. it has no weight unless it is executed i think it's a shot that we have to do something. i started off my remark by
saying my number one is trust. i have to go out there and restore trust. the reason why, one of the reasons why people want to sell or transfer public land is there is no trust because they feel like they don't have a voice. they feel like they don't matter they should matter. >> congressman if that role wasn't part of a bigger package, if it stood alone would you support it. >> i would not. i think i voted 17 times against transfer or sale of public land or in favor. >> that's a great answer. you mentioned you are a big teddy roosevelt fan. many of us are. in 1906 he signed the antiquities act. eighteen states have new national monuments established in the past six years. in my home state of new mexico we have two new monuments that have already proven to be incredibly popular with local communities and which are already driving economic growth for local businesses.
frankly, my navajo constituents are very supportive of the new monument because it protects some of the most sacred sites in their historical homeland. i have letters here from business owners, sportsmen, faith leaders, county leaders and veterans in new mexico asking for your support for the monuments. i ask that you allow me to smithies for the record. >> the antiquities act is a law of the land and communities in new mexico are already in the process of developing management lands for those monuments. will you commit to working in good faith with these gateway communities including tribal communities to make sure that these monuments are a success or
some might say even to make sure that these monuments are great? >> i will absolutely commit to working with you. there is some monuments that are more controversial than others. i think a monument, when it involves the state, the state should have a say. to me, i've always considered monuments that drive across montana, it's a pretty big state between here in chicago, when you see a sign that says monument, i always envisioned it as a battlefield, a location that deserves special recognition. larger monuments that are millions of acres that don't have support of the community, there's no doubt the president has the authority to amend the monument. it's always in the papers, it will be interesting to see whether the president has the authority to nullify a monument, but certainly my counsel. >> what is your view on that. legally, it's untested. what i would prefer is to work in a collaborative effort with the states. if they like their monuments, and we've talked a great deal in
the state of maine on it and if the state is comfortable with the monument as it is a may have a management plan, i think we should work with the state and be an advocate. if the state is upset about a monument and they had a plan that different from what was done, then i think we should defer a lot of that to the state. >> can you point to a sentence within the antiquity act which you know is very short that authorizes rescinding a monument. >> there is no statement that authorizes rescinding. i'm not an attorney, thank god. >> that makes two of us. >> i think we are all grateful. >> i would think the president would nullify a monument and it would be challenge. the court would determine whether or not the legal framework allows it or not. i would hope the right path is to work with the states were that monument is, and i think
we've all benefited from a lot of our monuments, certainly in montana, the battlefield of little bighorn is incredibly important in the crow nation and they're very happy with it although it does need some work. >> thank you congressman. >> senator alexander. >> thank you madame chairman. congressman dinky, and to your family, welcome. i'm impressed with your record of service and with you and your views and i look forward to supporting you. i think you have a chance to be a perfect secretary of the interior. thirty-two years ago president reagan asked me to head up something called the pres.'s commission on americans outdoors and we worked on it for two years looking ahead for generations to see what our outdoor recreation opportunity should be and the one conclusion i came to is there ought to be one policy for the west and one policy for the east because there are so many differences. this committee is filled with
westerners. let me give you a little bit of an eastern perspective from my side. we like what we have but one area that i would ask you is that in the newspaper today, the national park service has established a panel to review the devastating chimney top fire we had in the great smoky mountains national park so we could learn from it. if there were any lessons to present such a thing. were not used to that. it was unexpected. we have 80 inches of rain a year end this fire started on chimney tops and hurricanes blew it and burned up half gatlinburg. you commit to paying close attention yourself to that review so we can see if there are any lessons to be learned for the future? >> senator i will absolutely commit to that. i think it's important. i've been to the beautiful park and gatlinburg and pigeon ford. it's a wonderful place in a special place in america and i'm glad it's a park. i will work with you to make sure we figure out what the
roadwork or best path forward is to make sure incidents like that don't happen again. thank you very much. i'm very impressed with those who responded to it but they too want to know what we can do better. >> the difference between yellowstone or glacier in your territory is that land was already owned by the united states for the smokies were bought by the people of tennessee and north carolina and given to the national park. the other differences we have a lot more visitors because of our location, twice as many as yellowstone which is such a prized place yet our funding, our appropriations for yellowstone is more than twice the total funding for the smokies, and because of the restrictions that were established when people gave it to the federal government, we can charge an entrance fee. we have a lot less money to deal with a lot more people. will you, during your time take
a careful look at the allocation of funding between the smokies and other parks to try to make sure that our most visited national park at its fair share of funding. >> we talked about this in your office. yes, i think we need to look at the formula. clearly the smokies is different than other parts and should be recognized as that. looking forward with this committee on the infrastructure bill, we are hoping we can take a big bite out of the deferred maintenance on infrastructure and the number of roads and facilities. if we are 12 and half half billion dollars behind in our parks, certainly we as a great nation can do better. it will take this committee guidance with the chairman's leadership to make sure that infrastructure is part of the package. >> my last question has to do with recommendations on the commission on americans outdoors, 32 years ago. we reaffirmed the rockefeller commission so i hope you will count me in along with other
senators here and wanting to help you find a way to permanently authorize that. it makes a lot of sense to take money from oil and gas exploration and use it for benefit for the environment. it has made sense since the 1960s. the the problem is, we have a $20 billion backlog that we haven't appropriated. it's important to do that. we found 30 years ago that 80%, most outdoor recreation occurs near where we live and about 80% of us live near city parks, not near yellowstone. that's the importance of the land and water conservation fund another important set of recommendations had to do with land trust and scenic byways,
all of which were state and local and not federal. will you use this opportunity to look ahead another generation and asked the question what outdoor opportunities were will our children and grandchildren have. i think you're in a wonderful position to do a follow-up to the commission on americans outdoors. this is the 30th anniversary of that report and a generation has passed. it's time for the next two look. >> that brings us to a smaller smaller.about the next generation of a millennial's. we we have to motivate and incentivize outdoor activities to teach our millennial's the importance of the great outdoors. you look at the numbers and the demographics are a little different. people who are visiting the parks are the older generations. we have to look at new ways of incentivizing younger millennial's to experience the parks, to experience the
outdoors, to teach them the value of our public lands. >> that's a concern just looking at numbers of how do we get our kids out there enjoying the great outdoors. in many cases i would argue it's better than being in front of the tv watching video games. >> senator duckworth. >> thank you madame chairman. congressman, welcome. in 2013, mr. trump tweeted on the issue of military sexual assault by blaming the women who served, and he said, and history, 26000 unreported sexual assault in the military. what to these geniuses expect when they put men and women together. later in 2016, at the commander-in-chief form, he descended that sweet and said while it is a correct tweet and there are many people think that's absolutely correct. following that tweet, you put
out a statement of praise for mr. trump and at no point did you call him out on that sweet. at no point did you call on him to apologize for that tweet. i wonder, as someone who's about to take charge of the major federal agency with both men and women serving, sometimes in rugged conditions i wonder what that says to the employees of our national park service it. you in fact, recently defended the president elect bragging about his own commitment of sexual assault by dismissing it as locker room talk. you are now nominated to oversee the national park service which currently has a major sexual-harassment problem that the house government reform committee has been investigating on a bipartisan basis. if confirmed, how can we be sure you won't look the other way in dealing with this issue of sexual assault at the national park service like you did with your own potential boss the
president-elect. >> thank you for the question. >> i take issues of sexual assault and harassment absolutely seriously. as you know as a military commander, the tolerance of zero. >> have you had a conversation with the president-elect about his statement. >> i have had a conversation about the park service. there's problems with sexual harassment and morale. if you look at the park service, who would not want to be a ranger. historically, the job of a ranger in a park service has been one of the top positions as far as employee satisfaction. today, they rank at the bottom. now something is going on. whether it sexual-harassment as an influence or whether they feel like they don't have the flexibility to make decisions, whether they feel, there's a lot
of reasons but i have to get to the bottom of it because it's the front line. you have served and thank you for your service. you understand that the morale, if it's bad the front line, make sure miss mission success isn't going to happen. sexual-harassment is part of what's killing morale. i would go out on the front line and talk and listen about what's happening because they have to know from leadership from the top in the bottom that we have zero tolerance. >> can you describe a little bit what you will do do and what policy you will put into place. i have concerns because you have a history of being willing to participate in gimmicks. in fact, you cosponsored legislation to require women to
register for the draft despite not supporting it yourself because you wanted to send a gimmicky message that actually backfired on you and that bill passed and it was republican house leadership that had to come to your rescue and pulled out a conference report. i'm concerned because you yourself have a history of saying women who served in congress provide a distraction and it weakened the force paid i was there that night and i think were there until 3:00 a.m. you said that the enemy don't recognize men and women in uniform, they recognize weaknesses by talking about women and men serving together in combat. again, men and women serve in the national park service and i worry that with a history of you being willing to participate in a wrap up close piece of legislation, this gimmicky bill that you passed that backfired on you, what what you are going to do when you lead federal employees at the national park service. i think the topic of women serving in the military and
signing up for selective service isn't a gimmick. i would say that's a mischaracterization of the importance of the issue. >> you did introduce a bill that you did not support. >> i think it's important for america to have that discussion and during that time, every table table around montana was talking about it. i don't think it's a gimmick to talk about an open discussion, whether or not women should be part of the selective service. my daughter is a navy diver and i have served in combat with women. everyone has a role as you know. >> do you think women serving at the frontline weakened that force. >> not at all. i think everyone should have the same respect. i think there are jobs that are different within the park service. there are women that i think assume every role and i think that's an opportunity that has
been given to women long before, i'm not sure when but a long time and i think we should be comfortable with that. i certainly am, and the issue of gimmicks, again, i take offense that discussion about selective service is a gimmick. i think it deserved our vote and it deserved a discussion. >> senator lee. >> thank you madam chair. thank you congressman for being here. thank you to our your service to the country. we appreciate all you have done to keep us safe. i agree with what my colleague said earlier that public land sales are very different when you asked people from different states, the reaction they might have might differ depending on what part of the country they come from. those who are from east of the mississippi are likely to feel a
little bit differently than those west of the mississippi. there is a reason for this. one in particular has to do with the fact that of this land that the federal government owns, were were talking roughly 30% of the landmass in the united states, the overwhelming majority of the federal land is in the western united states. it affects many in the western united states in a very real and personal way. very often it's poor and middle class who bear the biggest burden when it comes to our federal land. for this reason, the seemingly limitless power granted to the president of the united states under the into katie's act is particularly troubling to some of us, with the stroke of his executive pen, and the president of the united states can up and communities, can change traditional ways of life, change
religious practices and lockup hundreds of thousands of acres of land with one action. in some cases over a million acres. to begin, i want to ask you the same question i asked, we want to give you local support as a necessary precondition to the antiquities act. >> i think it's critical to have state and support on a monument that they participate in. in the case of salt lake or utah , i'm concerned about the schools and the funding mechanism that has been largely taken away so that the concerned.
if you start at the local community level, the grassroots and you build and there's participation, then we get to have the problem. as a former military officer, you plan and planning prevents a lot of miscues in execution. part of the planning process is to go out, get community support, make sure your governor and your elected leaders are behind you, and then petition and talk to the president who makes a decision and everyone should be on the same page, or at least about on the same page. >> i appreciate that, and i hope congressman that if you're confirmed to this position that one of the first things you will do is come to utah and i encourage you to talk to some of the people who have been affected by this when he designated 1.35 million acres in southeast utah and san juan
county, our state's state's poorest county against the overwhelming opposition of the local population, against the opposition of all six members of our delegation against the opposition of our governor and all of our statewide elected officials within the state of utah. i think what you will hear from them is please, under-secretary, do something about this. congressman, if you you are concerned, we you consider visiting utah, talking to people affected by this monument designation, and based on what you hear from the affected population, consider having a conversation with president trump about revisiting this unfortunate step. >> thank you for the and i am absolutely committed to restoring trust. if confirmed, i have committed to go out to utah first and talk to the governor, talk to the
people on the ground and come back and make a recommendation on that. >> i think that's important. i will be a very busy guy. i will go out to the state of washington and alaska. i think i've committed to go to everywhere so i'm going to be remote. i apologize to my wife in advance but i will be gone a lot. thank you for your willingness to do that. i have seconds left. i want to say that i appreciate you visiting with me and there is nothing in the antiquities act that prohibits revisiting and i also want to point out there is a distinction between talking about who should own and manage public land. those close to it or those thousands of miles away from it. on the other hand suggesting that exxon mobil should set up a drilling rig underneath delicate arch, that is a strawman argument and not one that anyone
i know of raising this issue wants to advance. thank you. >> thank you madame chair and welcome congressman. first, let me just echo concerns that senator duckworth said in terms of sexual and office harassment incidences. these are very serious and i hope in addition to listening you will create a work environment so that victims will be willing to come forward without fear of retaliation. we are hearing very, very serious things related to this. >> yes, ma'am and you have my absolute commitment that i do take it seriously. the work environment is incredible. we have 70000 professional men and women within the department of interior and when you walk in the door in the morning, you should absolutely have the right expectation of a work
environment that is conducive to success and, if there is a culture of sexual harassment, that is just flat wrong. i will stamp it out if confirmed. >> we will hold you to that. >> let me switch and talk about water from a different standpoint. in michigan, we have have a lot of it around us and we like that and we are very concerned about water quality and certainly water relates to our economy in very big ways. not just in michigan, but we have actually, four of us on the committee, senator portman portman and franklin and duckworth and i who represent 20% of the world's fresh water and these are very serious issues for us. when we look at that, and you and i talked about this in our office, various threats to the great lakes, one of the big ones
relates to what's happening in terms of invasive species, including this big hundred pound fish with no functioning stomach that is something of great concern to us. if confirmed will you commit to advocating for the necessary funding for programs and agencies and agencies at interior like fish and wildlife service, geological survey? it's critical to early detection >> i will absolutely commit to the right clean water. i understand it in michigan and after our conversation, i have the opportunity to look at it more detail. it's a threat. i got the message and it's the threat. having a hundred pound carp jump out of the water and hit you is a big issue.
to make sure we isolate, eliminate and control it, there are invasive species a problem all the way into hawaii. we do need to shore up and part of the infrastructure bill is looking at that on our water networks and part of redoing our water to make sure our water is clean and abundant and make sure we protect our watersheds in different areas to make sure that invasive species are part of that program. >> interior is playing up important role in partnerships. when you talk about partnerships at the agencies, we have had every agency, every department that in any way touches on this issue, working together for a number of years now. they are laser focused on the question of asian carp and other invasive species. we have a $7 billion recreational and commercial fishing industry, 14 billion-dollar boating
industry. this is critical for us. one of the other areas that's important in terms of fish and wildlife working together with state and local fisheries and natural resource manager relates to states and local communities. these are very, very important areas. we want decisions made based on science about what is really happening. as we look at scientific information being shared, we you advocate for funding levels, without regard to political or philosophical ideology. we need to be focused on science when we look at how to address this issue. >> yes i will because management decisions should be based on
objective science. as a geologist, that is step one. you need to know the numbers if you're going to manage an endangered species, what are our numbers that we should have a what we strive to have. having objective science, part of the good thing about the job if confirmed as i do have a lot of very, very talented people within the interior department that our objective, that want to do the right thing, that want to share information, and i want i want to make sure we do coordinate and open up the channel between the different agencies and public and private institutions that have a lot of talent too. :
to have a unique understanding of the position you been nominated to fill. the department of the interior is tested with managing acreage, thousands of species, and thank you for coming to visit with me before the hearing. the obama administration has used the department of interior as a department or preservation, blocking up lands with the goal of preserving the as if they existed in a vacuum. i believe the better policies have have damage landscapes, have failed to protect species and disenfranchise the people most invested in the stewardship of our resources. i look for for to your new approach of the incoming administration. the war on coal. it is real for communities across the west including wyoming, and montana. it has devastated small-town's
and threatens our energy security. if confirmed, will you commit to ending this moratorium on federal coal leasing? >> the one coal i believe is real. behind me is an area that works in the cold minds of the agency which, by the way the crow agency if you are to take coal out of the picture the unemployment rate would probably be in the 90%. they are very keen on making sure they have their jobs i would give them the ability for self-determination. the moratorium i think was an example of one-size-fits-all. it was a view from washington particularly if your state such
as wyoming and part some antenna. and where coal is important. overall, the president-elect has made a commitment, ten the war on coal, i think we should be smart on how we approach our energy, all of the above is a crack policy, call is certainly a great part of that energy makes. to your point, i'm i'm also a great believer that we should invest in research and development particularly uncle because we know we have the asset that is work together to make a cleaner, better we should be leading the world in clean energy technology. i'm confident that coal can be a part of that but it's about science and investing in our future. >> with use of the congressional review act i'm looking at a disapproval of the venting and flaring rule. i think it exceeds the authority and put federal lands at a greater disadvantage. will you support our efforts to
reverse this rule under the conventional rule act. and i think what the driving forces that were venting and wasting energy. that's troubling to me. the amount of venting almost exceeds what we get out of the fields. many of the wasting can be approached by having an infrastructure so let us build a system where we capture that energy that is otherwise being wasted. that's an enormous opportunity. and geopolitically as well. we haven't talked a lot about overseas, but energy is so critically important if we wanted check russia than let's do it with natural gas, if we want to put pressure in iran,
this is all part of a larger package and it cannot be done without the great state of wyoming and their assets, or alaska. but we have to think globally on it and it is better to produce energy in america under reasonable regulation and get better over time then why should be produced overseas with no regulation. >> i want to talk about stage grouse management plans. plans were used to justify what they called the non-warranted status under under the endangered species act. but under the core they oppose the mandates including the blm which includes other things you can commit to read turning it back to the states and stop in
the top-down mandate. >> my understanding is the decision is going to come before the department of interior sometime in march. i understand there'll be options and alternatives. i will work with you when i see those documents and work with all of you what i see the documents to make sure were doing the right thing. but concerns, there's no target number. i'm not i'm not sure how you can manage without a number. if we just grab a management a property without a number, look at that with the top five. but everyone loves sage grouse and knows that we have to protect the species. generally those living on the ground are in a better position. we should be an advocate and partner in this rather than heavy-handed. i just dictate terms particularly when we don't have
a number. >> thank you madam chair. >> congressman, as a federal oregon duck, i appreciated the visit in the office. as we talked about when you go into a small western town today and you head to the coffee shop where we see most of the decisions usually get made, you will now see ranchers, timber, environmental folks, and they will all be sitting around and you will ask them what they're doing and they will mention one word and this is true all over the west. that word is collaboration. they have decided that everybody has enough clout to block the other side and nothing happens unless they collaborate.
we see that our resource advisory committees of this is really probably what i am more in. and i remember being on the committee when the chairman was getting us involved in the resource issues and maybe we have some kind of club for extra tears of this committee or something. the point was we started talk about collaboration then and on this sage grouse issue which we are all deeply committed to making sure there is not a listing under the endangered species act, were going to have to have a federal state local collaboration. this is with my friend and my wyoming. i think you just mentioned one of the roles the federal government at play and that is, setting a target, now i
have always said when the federal government sets the target and then we say to local folks, you all go do your thing because what works in oregon may not necessarily work several thousand miles away, tell me a little bit about how you will approach setting up the federal state collaboration on what is one of the biggest most important collaborations we have seen in years? >> thank you for the question. i do believe the oregon ducks are going to be better. the collaborative efforts getting together because it takes a lot of resources and time and effort on the frustration is if you get together, farmers, ranchers, all stakeholders and after a two-year venture they come up with a plan and there's fighting
, discussion and compromise you come up with the plan and it is ignored. or it is sued multiple times, so we have to incentivize coming together for the federal government i've been an advocate for in powering the plan based on broad central goals. in the case of the sage grouse. >> like targets, management numbers, what's the goal. and i don't know how you make a management plan unless you have a goal. the goal needs to be scientifically objectively based to protect the species. >> let's move on to force four street. because i like the answer. you laid out there is a role for role for the federal government as it relates to targets. i 100 stood that i'm very sympathetic. your point and we also have have a strong role for local folks in the state and the like.
apply it now to for street where once again we are trying to find a way to get beyond years of gridlock. now i've written a proposal for state. we talked about it. it doubles the the harvest in a sustainable way, on average for decades while protecting our treasure. there are other ways to go about doing it as well. the oregon delegation delegation is trying to find some common ground. how do you do it in your view without going to sufficiency language which basically has generated ever since the spotted owl, all of the polarization of fighting? >> will thank you, that's a next line question, on the house side we what we hope ted happen the senate would pick it up and we would look between the
committees and fine-tune it because there are parts of either party but overall is to get. >> in that bill it did not exclude any stakeholder in our forest. in our forest as you recognize i'm good friends with g were 71,000,000 acres behind in removing dead and dying timber. the goal should the goal should be healthy force so you have the catastrophic. >> would you furnish that answer to me in writing? i want to know how we bring about collaboration without sufficiency language? my time is up. i want to thank you for your support in our bipartisan effort in fire borrowing. it's an insane budget practice that discriminates against preventative for street. >> thank you senator). >> i have your comments on collaboration.
the other word i hear is that collaboration is litigation. we collaborate and we have agreements and extreme groups stop in court. we have to address this ever going to solve the problem. welcome to the committee. it's been a long path from boy state 1979 to being with you. it's wonderful to see a family here. i cannot be a prouder montana. in fact, when when confirmed you'll be the first montana and two other serve in a cabinet position in the united states history. so history will be made when you are confirmed. with you at the helm of department of interior will be a strong advocate of public land and a strong advocate for energy. you have been tenacious in working on behalf representing our 12 indian tribes and i know
you'll be committed to bringing prosperity to their communities. >> as i say about montana. we are unique blend. we are a blend of rural haggard and john denver. mastering that is always a challenge. but it does result in a commonsense approach that can make our country stronger. i think you have mastered that melody. which is why think you have secured the support from such a diverse number of sportsmen of industry and tribal groups. there's a list year that singlespaced two columns one of groups that range from the american flyfishing trade association that have written letters on behalf of your support. the theater roosevelt conservation partnership. and these are just a few of the many on this list not to mention others across the country, and
the list goes on. that is a tough balance to walk. it's a walk of wisdom in your pocket well. i like to summit some of the letters of support if i could. >> thank you. representative, why do do you want this job? >> well i been asked that, thank you for the question thank you for the remarks. i love my country. and i love public lands and i loved teddy roosevelt's idea that we should think bolden big and prepare for the future. in this job i take very seriously of confirmed because of all of that. our country loves our parks and our lands. our nation should be better equipped. our indian tribes with the ability of self-determination.
when the department of interior have an influence over the fifth of our territory, that means influencing the beaches in maine with clams, to our fisheries outside of hawaii and even to this body we are all different but we all share common purpose. to. to make our country great again. i think if the secretary of interior, i think think i will have inherited 70000 hardcharging dedicated professionals that want to do the same thing. my task is to organize for a better future for interior in our country. i will work with anyone as the list would indicate. i have never been red or blue. to me and it always been red, white, blue. politically have never asked an
individual serving next to me whether they're republican or democrat. what matters matters to me as they are american and they love their country and are committed to success. we have a very important important mission in the department of interior ahead of us. >> there's a lot of concerns that montanans have had with previous leaders is that a lot of land-use decisions are done with disregard for the impact that art close. in fact as we travel around the state together your favorite lined is they cannot find montana on a map. whether it's strategic out plans, too too often they face decisions on their public land that are out of touch washington d.c. bureaucrats. my question is two parts. what are your views for control and management of our local controls out west and, how can
we make the department of the interior look more like montana and get it closer to the people. >> that's a great question. we need need to shore up our frontline. if our frontline managers don't have the resources our flexibility, nor the authority to make decisions they know is right, there's a problem in the military is like being in the front line and asking for a bullet. you have to go all the way to the back headquarters to get hit bullet. when you get it you have to ask permission to shoot it. then you have to ask permission to shoot at what. that's what's happened on the from my managers. were losing a lot of folks because they have just had it. so we need to shore up the frontline to empower the frontline to do good things. we need understand that that their guidance and they should be incentivize on their evaluations of working with local communities. and that's how you do it.
you reward on evaluation, how did you collaborate, did you talk to the local community. you have local community support? that's a part of it. i think lavender efforts work, generally they deliver the better outcome but again my job or my most important task is to restore trust. that when it fish and wildlife service truck shows up one you want to see management in euros and you want to see it's a good hand. and i think we have been too heavy-handed and there's a separation between those living in the land and those managing it. and unfortunately those managed decisions are made here. if you don't know the difference between -- maybe you're not in the decision to make the decisions.
>> congressman, it is nice to meet you for the first time. it's unfortunate we unfortunate we didn't have a chance to meet prior today. i am one of those western states particularly in nevada where 85% of the land is owned by the federal government and we deal with eight federal agencies on a regular basis. so your role as potential secretary of interiors very important to us in nevada. i peered what you've had to say about the antiquities act and let me get one more commitment from you. just recently we've had to monuments. we'd love for you to come out and take a look at the monuments. there is local resistance but i think if you'd make a commitment to come out we would love to host you. >> i will make a commitment and i'll make a commitment also to
remember. if you have a monument to new state, before i make a recommendation to the president, i want to talk to. many talk to the delegation, and been a make sure that we are working together on this. and that is what a secretary should do. a front. >> thank you congressman, i appreciate that and i appreciate your talk on collaboration and your goal of restoring trust by working with locals and local communities in the state. one of the areas in nevada most people don't realize there's 32 tribal road reservations in nevada. i would love a commitment if you could guarantee that tribal members will have a seat at the table when it comes to land management near their communities. one it involves the department of the interior. >> i have the same discussion with the great state of minnesota. i think we all would like to see
-- be better. how how we do that because they have not been better we need improvement on that. and i think we need to do a few things. sovereignty should mean something. when we say your sovereign nation let's have the discussion of how to empower that. secondly, respect, and many cases our indian nations have not had the respect i think they deserve. and lastly, how do we empower great nations for self-determination. what tools do they need? the education is oftentimes lacking. some of the education opportunities far exceed anything in the lower 48. that is not always the case. >> thank you. wild horses has not been brought up yet and as you may or may not
know, in in nevada this is a big issue. in fact the wild horse population is over 31,000. i'm curious, how would the blm under your direct handle the wildhorse crisis? >> i have learned more in the last couple weeks about boroughs and horses for multiple states and this is where were going to have to have discussion to work together. the present policy is a disaster. it's enormously expensive. i'm a great horseman and very sensitive and that nature that horses don't starve and we treat animals in a humane way. but kicking them out and then spending millions of dollars every year on a program that is not working, let's work together to figure out how to fix it. we can fix the horse problem. it's it's not just nevada, it is
western and i understand there's a problem in florida to. >> and let me, this hasn't been brought up, but seven out of ten people in nevada get the majority of their water supply from lake mead. and the last 15 years have exposed a bathwater ring around lake mead to show the level has decreased. it's been a concern of ours and many and many of the states up and down the colorado. arizona, california and nevada are in agreement on a trout contingency plan. our concern is that with this transition there'll be an impact on the water supply for nevada. there's lake time during this transition so we would like to how you'll exercise your authority and leadership and help your states finalize and implement their trout contingency plan?
>> thank you for the question. water is critical for a number of reasons. we have to look at storage, efficiency, infrastructure, all of which are behind and then negotiate in good faith. whatever walks into a room with an agenda is not good faith. leadership is recognizing the importance of having a win-win. and also recognize that we have to do better on our infrastructure. we wasted an enormous amount of water in this country just not having enough holding capacity. some of our dams are lacking. there is opportunity but but we need to manage our resources better and i think we can have a huge role in that. >> so you're committed on working with the states on that? >> absolutely.
>> thank you very much congressman. thank you for your willingness to take the song. as you know i can see from today is going to be a very a very contentious job from time to time. but somebody has to do it. i'm glad you're there. i'm particularly thankful for the president-elect to do a westerner to do this. my years here have taught me what a difference between east and west. i've come to the conclusion that the mississippi river gets wider every year and i have watched in tennessee a forest fire was burning in your heart goes out to those people. and everyone in tennessee is aghast at this. we deal with this every year. number of the senators appear have fires that are substantially bigger than what happened in tennessee. and i don't need mean to denigrate what happened it was a terrible disaster but we live with this all the time and yet we have fought in a bipartisan fashion to try to get fire funding straightened out and we haven't been able to do it.
hopefully with the new administration we will be able to do it. when you look at the percentages of our states that are owned by the federal government, 22 thirds in idaho, substantially more nevada, and i think you will find that it's frustrating because the people who live east of the mississippi are sometimes very cavalier about our problems. and probably one of the poster child of that is the monuments situation the president with a stroke of a pen be at a republican or democrat set-aside millions or more acres. if this happened to a state back state back east people would be up in arms. yet it ends up on the front page of the paper and is gone. nobody thinks about it again. the collaborative method that has been discussed is really
critical in these public land situations. i did it when i was governor, senator wyden has referred to how they are doing it nor again and that's the way they get done. that's the only way they'll get done in the future and a lot of us have introduced a bill that is going to do something about that as far as the monuments are concerned. the states really have a role. and that brings me to my next point to make before i run out of time. and that is to talk about management and the department of interior. they don't call it the department of everything else for nothing. it has lots of different responsibilities. one of the most frustrating things that happen to us with the department of interior was with -- secretary to his great credit went out and said we have a big issue here was stage
grass. governors, when i sit down and see if you can do something about this. and they did, and in idaho, i don't know about the other states but i can tell you that thing was done incredibly well. bringing all sides to the table using the collaborative method including people from the united states fish and wildlife service is. they had a seat at the table. they constructed a plan. it was a give-and-take process. when they were done the plan was approved unanimously including the u.s. fish and wildlife services. another one comes back and they say not so fast. when i first met sally jewel, the first thing i said to her after niceties was have you ever heard of sage grouse? it said no. and i told her the problem we had and i said when you are ahead of rei it's the marketing people were fighting with the accounting department you would
step in and do something about this, i want some help on this. fish and wildlife service it's all right another say that what are we doing here? one agency in their employing scientists on both sides will fight with each other, why bother to have it if the blm can come in and overrule it. we had made some progress but it's fallen off the charts. what i want to talk to about his management. my good friend on the right says there will be wholesale changes of bpa. it is frustrating and it makes us angry. when you get to federal agencies that are in disagreement with each other and the head of the department will not step in and say i'm going to resolve this. i'm the head of this. they stand down. these people are in charge of wildlife.
if you don't want to do that find but let's get rid of u.s. fish and wildlife services. let blm do it. i'm encouraged by what a here today. one thing we didn't talk about -- have you ever visited the national inner fire center in boise? >> no, sir. i've been on the frontlines on multiple fires. >> you will be impressed when you visit. i know you will do that. i'll be interested to showing off. no falls in line with one of the things we talked about and that is, they have a map with a dinky red red dot for every fire start in america each year. it is thousands of them. right in the center of them -- is located there for good reason. my my time is up. thank you very much. >> thank you senator. >> senator king. >> thank you madam chair, welcome to the committee.
i enjoyed the testimony today. i want to thank you for your straightforward recognition that, changes happening in human activities contributing to attend the image of the glacial retreat during lunch. i'm going to that's my arsenal of anecdotes. the theme i'm hearing today has been one size does not fit all in collaboration and consultation and communication. you alluded to an issue that we have a national park rule about you can't exploit natural resources on national parks. on the other hand on the national park with a been digging clam since time suddenly the park decided he can't do that anymore. that's me is an example of how there should be a better communication and relationship between the park which is an important asset to the state of maine and at some neighboring
communities. . . >> wore welcome to move the park headquarters to maine if you choose. too far a., mcsaid. >> come on. >> backlog. the backlog in the parks is a straightforward problem of funding well should be funding to pay the maintenance of the parks. we have been putting it off for 10 or 15 for 20 years, and i hope that you'll approach the next -- the upcoming bug as saying this is part of our obligation to pay the park
rangers and to pay all the expenses over the parks and to children -- chup away at the backing backlog. >> i may own the helicopter but i have to ask you for the gas, and in order to fun the parks, the level it goes through this body. i have to convince you that the money is going to be spend, prioritized. i have to convince the president-elect that the parks are his priority as well because they should be america's pry worth. >> the point made earlier about the backlog, the chairman talked the return on investment is gigantic in terms of what we put into he parks versus what they -- the economic activity they generate in their areas. so, it's a good investment for the public can and i believe for the government itself. similar concern.
we're now talking about in recent days bat major defense buildup. we're talking about a major infrastructure investment and major tax cuts. all of those together don't really add up in terms of the aright ma tick and the -- arithematic and the budget and the deficit and the debt. there will be pressure on various areas in the federal government, particularly nondefense areas. will you resist stoutly with the heart of a navy seal efforts to raid the land and water conservation fund too fund other government priorities. >> i'm on record of supporting full funning of the lan water conservation fund for a reason. it's an incredibly important program, done great work. this is probably one of the reasons why the president-elect put a former navy seal in place. i don't yield to pressure. higher prison, -- principle,
yes. but job is to advocate for at the department of interior and be a voice in the room on great public policy. there's going to be a lot of times where i'm going to need the help of this body because by myself, i don't have the authority. i have to follow the law. and i will follow the law. i think the law needs to be adjusted in some areas, as this body has often said in order to adjust it, one, we have to have trust of whoever is going to execute it will do ill wet and, two, i need bipartisan support to make sure the law is adjusted appropriately so we can move the ball up the field, if that the right terminology, to make our park system make die better. >> we want to work with you. i learned as a lawyer in maine, when you get the answer you want you sit down and shut up so i yield back my time.
>> thank you, senator king. senator flight, right on time. >> thank you, madam chair. i've enjoyed hearing the testimony so i had to skip out for a minute and hope i'm not replowing old ground here. but as you know, arizona is home to a lot of public land, between the land that department of interior administers contributingly and that which it holds in trust and administers for the tribes. that's half of the state right there. it's 85% of arizona so we only have 15% in private hands and that means that the decision made be the federal government, including the department of the interior, have an outsized impact on the state, and we talk about the issues and thank you for coming to my office. i know you committed to me and everybody else to visit their
states in the early stages so we'll have a busy travel schedule. we mentioned, i know it was brought up a little bit, in terms of the drought and the colorado river, and the basin states very close to an agreement on a drought contingency planned to leave water bunked behind the dam at lake mead so we don't reach the stage where there are cuts that would hurt us badly. it's crucial for arizona, obviously, that we work with the department of interior to ensure that arizona water users to the extent they leave water behind the dam, the what doesn't disappears into some other state. that's the only basis on which some contingency plan would work. will you commit to working with news that regard? re got assurance from the department of interior and that assurance will have to go
forward until there is a drought contingency plan. >> i will commit to working, as i earlier discussed. i recognize that water, particularly the west, is a big issue in every state in west. and we got to get together and figure this out and i think some of it is infrastructure. best plan on water requirements are going to be and that's to make sure we have the infrastructure to reach those requirements, and it's going to be probably a tribal some efficiency, some building better capture facilities and then look at the infrastructure we have. we're wasting a lot of water. there's no question. so let make sure that every drop is precious and make sure our water is clean. we can do that. >> still on the subject of water, on water -- indian water settlements, the last year i introduced the will lap -- a bill to make necessary clarifieses to might mountain
and apache tribe settlement. you were a sponsor of black feet water rights and you are aware of these settlements. can we counseled on you to work with me and the tribes and other parties in arizona to make sure the settlement moves forward and also that we get the necessary clarification to the white mountain apache tribe settlement. >> i do. and also thank center departments for his work on the water compact. view compacts as other treaty obligation and we need to hold our part. the water compacts are difficult. they involve the state, the tribes, and the federal government, and then within the federal government, it's not easy. so, i do recognize the importance of working with you on the compacts and also the
importance of getting them resolved. they're an un -- a light out there. we need to recognize they are liability. a treaty obligation and let work together to get them done. >> thank you. cattle ranching has a long history in arizona, continues to hold a prominent place in our present day state as well as our history. i come from a ranching family. last weekend i was back on the f bar where i was raised near snowflake. ranching is never an easy business but made more difficult with issues like was already raised with the bur burros in and the gray wolf in southeastern arizona. we continue to hear a look of cooperation and coordination between the federal agencies and the local land users. i know that you have already
committed to work on this. you'll be hearing a lot when you come to arizona, in the issue wes have with wild bur -- burros and the -- >> concern about the optic whether it's blm or the for rest service. woke up where smoky the bear was revered. and in our nation it's feared. when they see smoky the bear they think of law enforcement rather than managing our forests. so i'm very concerned about that because it had implications the next generation. so, we have to come together and make sure that the management -- our team out there is viewed as helpful, lad land managers and not to be feared. want to stop by and say hello. don't want to avoid. in some
places the further you get out in parts of alaska and montana, their viewed as law enforcement and obstructionists. and i think we need to be really careful as leaders of this great nation to recognize and it go forward with solutions to make sure the next generation looks at law enforcement, blm or fish and game, as good neighbors, and helpful rather than to be feared. >> thank you. senator franken. >> thank you. let me get this straight. smoky the bear isn't real. right? >> he is real to me, sir. >> okay. that might be disqualifying. thank you for your service as a navy seal to your daughter's service as navy seal, to your son-in-law who frankly terrifies
me. he is out with one your grads -- you are the unsung hero of this hearing. you have been wonderful. you have a beautiful family. >> thank you, sir. >> and i want to get into what i consider a false choice, and the false choice that i hear you it rated a couple of times is between addressing climate change and the economy. i think that is a false choice. i think it's a false choice because, one, if we don't create is -- don't address is it's going to cost us a tremendous amount of resources. super storm sandy cost $60 billion because sea level has risen.
glacial national park is going to be mott -- i don't know ex-lake national park or mountain national park but isn't going to be glacier in 30 years. in minnesota we have built lots and lots of clean energy jobs, and we're addressing climate change, and we put in a renewable energy standard, and it's been very successful for our businesses. you signed a letter that in 2010 -- just want to get your -- clarify your stance. in this letter that you've urge it get lawmake -- state legislators who do this -- to, quote, pass comprehensive clean energy jobs jobs and climate che legislation. now, this letter also stated that quote climate change is a
threat multiplier for unstable in most volatile regions of the world and that, quote, the climate change threat friends significant national security challenges for the united states. challenges that should be addressed today because they will almost certainly get worse if we delay. i completely agree with that letter. and i ask unanimous consent, madam chair to include this in record. thank you. you were a navy seal for 23 years so job "he know better than most people here about protecting our country. i completely agree with your stance in this letter. that climate change trends there are threatens our national security. the defense department certainly knows that. and it needs to be addressed as quickly as possible. so i want to ask you, do you
still feel that climate change is a significant national security threat and one that requires immediate action or has your position changed since you have been in congress? >> that's a great question. >> thank you. >> and -- you're welcome. i want to be honest with you. the three tenets of climb change, one is we both agree that the climate is changing. woke agree that man is an influence. not -- a major influence. if you just look at co2 levels s and how they parallel with temperature rise. this is -- last year was the hottest year on record. the year before the hot easier on record. this is going to be hotter. this is happening and sea level is rising. >> and i'm not an expert in this field. what i do know -- >> that's to me is a copout. >> no. i want to be honest wife you -- >> i'm not a doctor but i have to make healthcare decisions.
>> i, too, sit on the natural resources committee, and i have went through hundreds of hours of testimony on all topics. there's no model today that can predict tomorrow. so, where we agree is we need objective science to, one, figure a model out, some, two, determine what are we going to do about it? what do we do? when you say that we want to -- on co2, recognize the co2 level, absolutely. recognize the ocean is a contributor it to. when a small rise in temperature in ocean makes a big difference in co2. >> i absorbs the co2 at sea level and that means storm surges create tremendous damage and are going to create climate
refugees, and are going to require -- i know i'm out of time -- they're going to require they of our military if we don't do something about it, and i don't -- -- i think this is a false choice. we can build an economy, sell to the chinese, sell clean energy technology. that is what we should be doing. i'm sorry i've gone over my time. >> thank you. do have a vote coming up shortly and i'd like to get to the two remaining members who have not had chance to ask questions. it is my intention that we have a second round after this but we'll be able to take a break as well. senator portman. >> thank you, madam chair, and commander, thank you for your willingness to step forward and serve in a very different capacity. we have had a lot of discussions today about issues relating to the department of interior and your role, one that i want to focus on at the national parks. think it's a great opportunity for you and for our country to do more to deal with the
$12.35 billion maintain backlog we talk about. to preserve and protect these great temperatures. we just went how to a process in congress of considering this in fact the legislation which was tied in with centennial last year, the national park centennial act, passioned in wee hours of the morning a month ago, it passed with the help of the chair and ranking members here today. it's something i've work on for ten years, we put a centennial challenge together. it helps with regard to park service by allowing private sector funs to be ratessed to match federal funding, and then second, helps the foundation to be able to raise funds. that money, bill the way, will be within your discretion, and i hope some of it will be used for deferred maintenance and i hope some will be used for some other special projects to enhance our parks.
so my question to you today is, are you aware of this program and its potential -- give you an example, thanks to lisa -- and the problemses committee, some of this was happening and match expected to be one-to-one was almost two to wind. a dollar of federal funding results in two dollars of private sector funding. think it could be greater than that. how do you you feel.the program? are you supporting funding this in appropriations cycle. >> thank you for in the question. i think it's great opportunity. one is the secretary of the interior, i have a number of boards with the diversity of talent, both in business and conservation, and foundations like this offer a unique opportunity for innovation, and
looking at different ways of not only funding our parks put also looking at protecting our parks, trail-building is -- i think is an opportunity we need to look at. how to re-establish a national trail-building program. a lot of that i would assume is going to come from private sectors. think the foundation and other boards are a unique opportunity to leverage, and i'm a strong proponent of it. >> i'm glad to hear that. we'll need your help. this one is crucial given the state of the parks. will say in ohio we don't have a lot of federal public lands. we do have a beautiful pork which is top ten in visitation and so when you're on your tour between hawai'i and montana, we expect you to drop into ohio and see one of the great sub-under barn parks in -- sub urban parks
in america where a lot of young people are engaged. we need to get the millenials involved. with regard to rules and orders that department has finalized in the last 60 days prior to your confirmation, should you be confirmed. i'm heard from con city tunes worried about job losses and other maybe impacts. what is your plan with regard to a 11th hour rules and specific live with regard to the buffer rule. >> well, i find the 11th hour rule to be problematic because what it shows to me that previous to that, there was no either collaboration or the effort was not effective. so, generally, the last hour rules result in distrust, and policy that i think is not
conducive of a collaborative and trust relationship. if confirmed i'll evaluation everything from to table, as it should be. specifically different rules. but in general, when you had a last, minute rule that mean is it was the last-minute decision and there wasn't working with this body to make sure we have a solution that should stand. >> thank you. appreciate that. particularly on stream buffer rule. fine finely, great lakes, senator stabenow asked united states be the invade species. fish and wildlife is important nice do the monitoring for us and the earl warning signal for the big head carp coming up and other species. i appreciate your commitment to her and those of white house who
want to preserve the great lakes. >> thank you. >> thank you senator portman. for the information of members the vote has started. 'll have senior herono ask questions and we'll take break and be back at 5:00. >> thank you, madam chair. congressman, you're going to be awfully busy because when you came to see me, you committed to coming to hawai'i, and i think you also mentioned visiting the territories which include guam, puerto rico, as well is think the compact nations, marshall islands and mike row knee should. you said you support all of the above in terms of energy, which sounds great except that in all of the above, what is happened is that the fossil fuel size of energy has gotten a lot of support over decades.
so i hope when you saw all of the above, you will also be committed to providing more resources and support, particularly r & d for alternative and renewables aside from or in addition toesle fuels we need to have a more level playing field for policy that truly respect support for all of the above. >> i've always been a strong proponent for research and development of different technologies, different inknow vacations, disopportunities, and in this complete spectrum of the energy, to include looking at traditional sources to make sure we're better at doing that. certainly horizontal drilling, fracking. when it come otherwise of the test tube and into fielding energy needs to be affordable, reliable and abundant. >> when you look 100 years in
the future and recognize that climate change is upon us and it a multiplier, and -- testified to that so i know serve military you're well aware we need to do more than continue to provide the kind of sustained support that we have provided to the fossil fuel side. let me get to the question of infrastructure because i'm all for the need to pay attention to infrastructure needs of the doi. then it's always an issue how to pay for and it i'm glad you're not going to -- in order to pay for some 11 billion in infrastructure sneads, but since the attends do not operate in a -- departments do not operate in a vacuum would you support privatizing social security or medicare in order to pay for doi
infrastructure needs? >> well, so how are we going to do it? my question -- not to evade the answer. but looking at our budget, we spend 70% of the budget, you know, in entitlements. 30% in in nondiscretionary. we're not going to be able to cut our way out of the problems we have. nor are we going to be able to tax your way out. the only hope of america is to grow our ware out and we can. energy is part of it. innovation is part of it but we need an economy that grows and we can compete not only can we compete. we can dominate. god has given us so much. >> i -- >> i think we could -- >> i hate to interrupt but i'm almost running out of time and i waited a lodge time. >> you have. >> thank you. >> very patient.
>> sounds to me as though you would look to grow the economy rather than cutting back on these kinds of programs that so many people, especially our seniors, rely upon. since the -- talented as you are you won't be able to do the job by yourself so you'll have an opportunity to weigh in own people who welcome your deputies and assistants. what kind of qualities would you look for in those people? >> loyalty, teamwork, trust, competence, commitment, and i think -- each of the divisions have different challenges, but challenges in bia is very different fan fish and lifestyle and blm. you have to put the right person in the right spot. from a seal perspective, we need fearless rough-riders that will
make the decision regardless of whether you're going to get sued or not. our policy has been whether we're going to get sued. whether it's right or wrong policy and this where is i need your help in order to develop the right policy, we should not be in fear of being sued time after time are time again. we should develop the right policy and have people in place that are willing to make the right decisions. >> i hope so. i with the chair's indiligence i'd like to just ask one more question -- regarding sexual harassment in the department and clearly this has been going on for too long, over a decade when it first came to light in the park service. so, as in the military, sex assault in the military is a huge scourge on the military and i want your commitment you dill whatever you need to do to
prevent, which includes changing the culture. a culture within the park service that lens itself to second all harassment, that there will be prosecutions, mean accountability for important traitor -- perpetrators and you will too pick things to prevent retaliation. these are the very kind of occurrences and factors have the hand been a scourge in the military so i'd like your commitment to making those changes will be following up with you. >> you have my commitment. zero tolerance. i will be fearless in this. >> thank you. >> thank you, madam chair. >> with that we will stand at east, hopefully until just about 5:00 when we come back for a second round. >> next, joint news conference with president trump and british prime minister teresa may. then a discussion on russian hacking and the u.s. election. after that, the supreme court
hears oral argument challenging some provisions in the deportation section of u.s. immigration laws. >> on her arrival at the white house, british prime minister teresa may posed with pictures for president trump in oval office. prime minister may is the first foreign leader to meat with president trump since he took office. following a luncheon meeting the two leaders took questions from the news media. >> this is the original in many ways. a great honor that winston churchill is there. >> thank you, mr. president. >> it's an honor. >> thank you. >> ladies and gentlemen, the