Herger stands up for farmers
Yreka's Siskiyou Daily News
Updated: Friday, July 18, 2003
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A "radical environmentalist"
legislative attack that Congressman Wally Herger
(CA-2) said was intended to deprive Klamath Basin
farmers of their irrigation water was successfully
defeated this week.According to a press release from
Congressman Herger, "an amendment to the Department
of Interior appropriations bill, seeking to prohibit
funds from being used for the Fish and Wildlife
Service to enter into new commercial leases on the
Lower Klamath and Tule Lake National Wildlife
Refuges in Southern Oregon and Northern California
that permit the growing of row crops or alfalfa,
failed in Congress by a vote of 197 to 228."
Herger said he was joined by Congressman John
Doolittle (CA-4) and Greg Walden (OR-2) in defending
the Klamath Basin agriculture community against an
attack by the "radical environmental" community on
the floor of the House of Representatives through an
"anti-agriculture" measure proposed by
Representative Mike Thompson (D-CA) and Earl
"Far from being agriculture neutral, had we not
stopped this amendment, the Klamath Basin community
may have suffered an economic drought of devastating
proportions," Herger said.
"Armed with no more than baseless claims, the
radical environmentalists continue their mission to
find any way possible to drive our farmers out of
Speaking on the floor of the House, Congressman
Herger said, "Shortages are not the result of an
over allocation, they are the result of
environmental laws that do not allow for balance."
He said that for a hundred years all interests in
the Klamath Basin - farmers, fish, and refuges -
survived and thrived by sharing the pain and the
profit alike. That changed in 2001 when an
interpretation of the Endangered Species Act caused
some interests to do without.
"Understand that the underlying goal of this
amendment is not to bring about balance," Herger
said. "It is just the opposite. The purpose of the
radical environmental groups supporting this
amendment is the removal of agriculture entirely."
"Frankly, this amendment would have set a
frightening precedent of federal command and control
over farming in the Klamath Basin," Congressman
Doolittle said. "Having the government dictating
what farmers can or cannot grow, regardless of
market conditions, would mark a clear move away from
economic freedom as well as good farming practices.
Today the target was beleaguered farmers in Southern
Oregon and Northern California. Who's to say that
tomorrow they won't be trying to tell auto mechanics
what model of cars to repair?"
- By John Diehm
NOTE: In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section
107, any copyrighted
material herein is distributed without profit or
payment to those who have
expressed a prior interest in receiving this
information for non-profit
research and educational purposes only. For more
information go to: