In a letter, Senator John Hoeven, Congressman Kevin Cramer and Governor Jack Dalrymple called on President Obama to “direct the Army Corps to follow established regulatory criteria and approve the final easement for the Dakota Access Pipeline crossing at Lake Oahe. In addition, we recommend federal resources be deployed expeditiously to protect people and property in the area of violent protests.”
In a joint release, the three North Dakotan lawmakers emphasize the impact the ongoing protests have had on ranchers and community members. According to the trio:
“Your inaction on the pending easement has created undue hardship and uncertainty for area residents, private landowners, tribal members, construction workers and law enforcement personnel. We have seen instances of trespassing, vandalism, theft and fire on privately owned ranchland. Residents have endured the challenges caused by roads being blocked or closed, either by protest activity or law enforcement’s response to it to ensure safety at a time when farmers and ranchers are busy harvesting, hauling hay, shipping calves and moving their herds from summer pasture. In addition, law enforcement is investigating cases of butchered, mutilated, injured and missing cattle, horses and bison in areas adjacent to sites occupied by protesters.”
Standing Rock Fact Checker applauds and supports North Dakota lawmakers fighting for the protection of their own citizens—something the federal government seems unwilling to at this point. The political gamesmanship will continue to jeopardize lives, especially as the weather gets worse.