Sen. Hawley Accuses Public Lands Chief of Lying About Ecoterrorism


BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning faced tough questioning from Sen. Josh Hawley during a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on Thursday, regarding her involvement in a 1989 tree-spiking case. Stone-Manning had previously testified that she had never been arrested or charged in connection with the incident, which involved inserting metal rods into trees in the Clearwater National Forest to prevent logging.

However, Hawley revealed that Stone-Manning was in fact the subject of an investigation and received an immunity deal in 1993. Stone-Manning confirmed that she had been investigated, but insisted that she stood by her previous testimony. Hawley also read a letter sent by Stone-Manning to the U.S. Forest Service in the 1990s, which contained threats and intimidation towards loggers.

Stone-Manning initially denied sending the letter, but later claimed that she had been intimidated by the individuals she had sent it to. However, retired Special Agent Michael Merkley, who led the investigation into the tree-spiking case, contradicted Stone-Manning’s claims, stating that she was “extremely difficult to work with” and was not a hero.

Despite the controversy, Stone-Manning remained defiant, accusing Hawley of trying to distract from her accomplishments as BLM director. Hawley countered that the incident was serious and had resulted in injuries and even deaths, and that Stone-Manning’s actions had caused harm to others.

The controversy has raised questions about Stone-Manning’s credibility and whether she was truthful in her testimony. A nonpartisan government watchdog group has also submitted a request to the Department of the Interior’s inspector general to investigate the matter, including whether agency employees assisted Stone-Manning in preparing her written testimony.

Tristan Justice
Tristan Justice
Tristan Justice is our western correspondent and the author of Social Justice Redux, a conservative newsletter on culture, health, and wellness. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism.

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