Ahead of possible presidential run, our very own Senator Boy Wonder votes to jeopardize some public lands

click to enlarge "Manatees? Yeah, fuck those guys." —most Senate Republicans - fws.gov
fws.gov
"Manatees? Yeah, fuck those guys." —most Senate Republicans

Manatees keep warm in the 72-degree springs Crystal River in winter, around the same time the handful of whooping cranes that still live in the wild set their sights on Chassahowitzka.
You know who doesn't give a shit?

Marco Rubio.

In late March, weeks ahead of this Monday's announcement regarding a possible presidential run, Rubio voted with the bulk of his GOP colleagues in the Senate on a budget amendment that would essentially open the door for the feds to get rid of National Forests, Wildlife Refuges and Wildernesses. Without federal protection, the land would revert to state or local control, though there's no guarantee that the states won't sell them off to companies that are interested in extracting certain natural resources from the land. 

Crystal River and Chassahowitzka are two of many national wildlife refuges in Florida

Will Rogers, head of the Public Land Trust, wrote that "hundreds of millions of acres of national forests, rangelands, wildlife refuges, wilderness areas and historic sites will revert to the states or local governments or be auctioned off," though national parks and monuments would still be protected.

"These lands constitute much of what’s left of the nation’s natural and historical heritage," he wrote in an April 2 op-ed in the New York Times.

The measure passed 51-49 in the Senate, though three Republican Senators — Corey Gardner of Colorado, Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, and Lamar Alexander of Tennessee — opposed it.

The effort to jeopardize vital public lands — and the critters that live on them — contrasts the will of voters, as Florida's overwhelming passage of Amendment 1 in November last year clearly demonstrates.

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