WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today spoke on the Senate floor urging his colleagues to oppose a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution to disapprove of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s rule protecting the lesser prairie-chicken under the Endangered Species Act.

“Native to the southern Great Plains, the lesser prairie-chicken has long been considered an indicator for healthy grasslands and prairies upon which hundreds of species depend. So, if the lesser prairie-chicken is in peril—in time, other species could be in peril as well,” said Senator Carper. “Sadly, the population of the lesser prairie-chicken has declined by some 97 percent throughout the last century. This decline is primarily due to loss of habitat and climate-related drought in the West.”

He continued: “If enacted, this resolution would not only invalidate the rule issued by the Fish and Wildlife Service, but it could also prevent the service from ever issuing a listing for lesser prairie-chickens in the future. To put it simply, enacting this resolution could set this species on a path to continued decline and eventual extinction. The resolution also undermines the Endangered Species Act. And, how is that you might ask? This resolution violates the basic premise that the law should be applied based on science and not politics.”

Click here to watch Carper’s full remarks on the Senate floor.