Tester Statement on Court Order Removing William Perry Pendley from the Bureau of Land Management

U.S. Senator Jon Tester released the following statement on tonight’s U.S. District Court ruling on the removal of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) acting head William Perry Pendley after determining he had served unlawfully for 424 days:

“This ruling enshrines in law what Montanans already knew: William Perry Pendley has no business overseeing our public lands. Montanans and future generations will benefit from Governor Bullock’s work protecting our public lands from Pendley’s reckless agenda.”

Tester has led the charge against Pendley ever since he was installed as de facto head of BLM without a confirmation hearing or a vote more than a year ago, and recently vowed his continued opposition to any continued role for Pendley, who continued to serve at BLM even after the White House withdrew his nomination to formally head the agency in August.

Prior to the August withdrawal, Tester led a group of Western Democratic Senators in calling for an expedited Senate confirmation hearing to force Pendley to answer for his career of anti-public land activism before the American people, Jon Tester today vowed opposition to any continued role for William Perry Pendley at the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), After reports indicated the White House intends to withdraw the anti-public land activist’s nomination to formally head the agency.

Tester also wrote to Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt in July urging him to remove Pendley, who has repeatedly stated his desire to sell off America’s public lands and who was forced to recuse himself last year from a large portion of BLM’s portfolio due to various flagrant conflicts of interest. Additionally, Tester pushed President Trump to expedite Pendley’s nomination in June to give the public an opportunity to review his troubling record.

Immediately after his nomination last summer Tester assailed Pendley’s record, and wrote a letter voicing serious concerns over his repeated calls for the federal government to sell off public lands, demanding he explain his past ethical violations regarding a coal leasing program and calling on him to recuse himself from his many conflicts of interest, including the Badger Two-Medicine case.