Judge Molloy Upholds Congressional Rider Delisting Wolves

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U.S. District Court Judge Donald Molloy used 18 pages to write his decision on the appeal brought on by several conservation groups against congress in delisting the gray wolf. The wolf will remain delisted in Montana and Idaho. He was very thorough in his decision, but he pointed out areas where congress may have overstepped their power. "If I were not constrained by what I believe is binding precedent ... I would hold Section 1713 is unconstitutional because it violates the Separation of Powers doctrine," Molloy wrote "It is not the role of the judiciary to write the law," Molloy wrote. "In my view, the Ninth Circuit's deference to Congress threatens the Separation of Powers; nonspecific magic words should not sweep aside constitutional concerns."

In April, Montana Senator Tester and Idaho Rep. Simpson added a must pass appropriation removing the wolves from the endangered species list, they added that this would not be changeable under judicial review. More or less tying Molloy's hands to where he could not act. Tester was pleased with the decision though. "Returning Montana's wolves to Montana management was the right thing to do, and we did it in a responsible way with utmost respect to existing law and to our Constitution," Tester wrote. "Now that the court has agreed, it's time to move forward with Montana's wolf management plan for the sake of our livestock, our wildlife, and for better management of wolves themselves."

This isn't the end to the wolf controversy, Alliance for the Wild Rockies, Center for Biological Diversity and several other conservation groups are taking Interior Secretary Salazar to court over this change. These groups feel that Molloy did the best he could with what he had, and that he basically outlined what they have to do to change the wolves' listing. However they are unsure if they can get an appeal going before hunting season begins.

Idaho has no quota and their season is set to begin September 1st, and Montana's quota is 220 with a season to start October 22nd. From The Missouilian.


hunter25's picture

Although this judge has been

Although this judge has been a problem in the past at least he finally did what he had to in leting the hunt go on this time. I'm very happy they will finally be able to get started getting the wolves under control but I'm kind of tired of reading about all the stupid excuses and drama in trying to stop it.

That said I sure wish I could be one of the guys that actually gets a chance to put one down this year. Getting a wolf has always been on my dream list but the cost of going to Canada to chase them is just more than I have been able to afford. Good luck to anyone out there hunting them this year as you are getting the chance of a lifetime.

Ca_Vermonster's picture

Great point SGM.  The problem

Great point SGM.  The problem with the environmentalists, in this case with wolves, is that they immediately see "hunt" and think it means "eradicate".

It is all about controlling the population, that's all.  And we, as hunters and conservationists, know best how to do it.  Look at elk, bison, etc.  Sure, it was unregulated huting that almost wiped them out originally, but we learned from our mistakes.  We took rigorous steps to control the herds, and they have bounced back tremendously.

Not to mention that 90-95% of the financial backing for these restoration programs comes from hunters, or taxes on hunters. 

Good on the judge.  It's not over by far, but it's going the right direction!


SGM's picture

Wolf Hunting

This is good news and a step in the right direction. States need to be able to manage their wildlife for the good of wildlife as a whole in their state. All the groups that oppose wolf hunting need to understand it is management not eradication. Wolves like bears or mountain lions must be managed by sound wildlife practices and science, not by politicians and emotion.   

ndemiter's picture

i'm kind of angry that

i'm kind of angry that nothing was done about wyoming yet again. i hunted a 4 hours drive from yellowstone and still saw more wolves than mule deer last year.

giving politicians the power over any natural resource has hurt the citizens of this country time and time again.