The following is a guest post by Beth Shaw.
Why Would a North Carolina Republican Support EPA’s Expansion in Alaska?
We have to ask ourselves what someone’s motivation might be whenever that person does something that defies reason and is contrary to their normal mode of operation. Such is the case of Robin Hayes, the North Carolina Republican Party Chairman, as he has recently written an open letter supporting the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) massive expansion.
Specifically, Mr. Hayes has written his open letter in support of the EPA’s ongoing efforts to block the development of the Pebble Mine Project in Alaska. That project would provide much needed resources that would help alleviate the economic depression in the area, would provide jobs to the Native American and other people in the area and would provide energy resources for the country.
What is Robin Hayes thinking?
Why would a North Carolina Republican come out in support of preemptive measures to stop mining on State land a continent away in Alaska? Why would he support theunprecedented expansion of the powers of the EPA?
Surely a representative of the people wouldn’t put his own financial interests over the interests of the people he is supposed to represent? That would be downright hypocritical and counter to the trust of the people he is supposed to be representing!
So what is Hayes up to? It might have something to do with his favorite Bristol Bay fishing hole.
The Hill tacked a short profile of Hayes to his letter, saying, “He is a frequent visitor to Alaska’s Bristol Bay, where he stays at Brian Kraft’s Alaska Sportsman’s Lodges.”
The reference is to two luxury lodges, where the tab for one week is $8,675, or more than the per capita annual income in nearby Nondalton ($8,411), where 37 percent of families are below the poverty line. The lodge prices don’t faze Hayes, who owns a hosiery mill in North Carolina. His grandfather was textile magnate Charles Cannon of Cannon towels and sheets fame.
Kraft has been fighting to preserve his lodges’ privacy by stopping the Pebble Mine, whose site is about 65 miles from his nearest lodge. Kraft founded and funded the Bristol Bay Alliance in 2004 for this purpose. He also became a project director for Trout Unlimited’s Alaska chapter in 2005. And David E. Sandlin, half-owner of the lodges with Kraft, is an old schoolmate of Hayes at North Carolina’s Duke University — they were two years apart.
It seems that it is often the case that the ‘green’ movement is motivated more by the personal interests of the well-to-do than by any real concern for the environment. It certainly doesn’t seem to be motivated by what is best for the country and the people.
Help stop this insanity. Take action! Send a letter to your Representative here.