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The National Parks Conservation Association and the National Park Hospitality Association commissioned a survey in June 2012 by Hart Research Associates and North Star Opinion Research with a sampling of 1,004 registered voters.  They found that 95 percent of Americans feel it is appropriate for the federal government to protect and support national parks.

Among the key findings of the survey:

Voters associate National Parks with key priorities and important American values. Nearly 90% of voters think that candidates who prioritize National Parks are seen as:

  •  Caring about the environment
  •  Protecting our heritage for future generations
  •  A good steward of our nation’s resources
  •  Forward looking
  •  Understanding what makes America special
  •  Patriotic
How refreshing to find something that almost all Americans are passionate about and can agree upon and I'm proud of my party for fiercely supporting and protecting our national parks.  We have been doing so for well over 55 years:

                 

I am sad to say that things have not changed at all in over 55 years.

From the above video:

"Look at Dixon-Yates contract, Senate republicans voted 96% to undermine TVA in favor of private power interests.  Only a fighting democratic opposition prevented the republicans from giving away our grazing lands [and] our national forests to private interests.  Every time we give away national resources America is poorer.  You who own them are poorer too".
We democrats are still a "fighting opposition" in the face of the republican party particularly where our National Parks are concerned.

Perhaps you remember when George W. Bush, back in April 2006, signed an official proclamation designating April 22-30 as National Park Week in the face of his fiscal year 2007 budget which slashed $100.5 million from the national park's budget which came on top of the $5 billon maintenance backlog in America's national parks.  

Last year my state was in an uproar because FL's Gov Scott would tear down state parks and put in golf courses.    

In March we heard that Rep Cliff Stearns wants to sell off our National Parks.  

And I told the man that we don’t need more national parks in this country, we need to actually sell off some of our national parks...
These three examples are indicative of the GOP mindset regarding our national resources -- an antiseptic businesslike attitude that these lands are something that can produce a profit. Americans want to preserve our lands for now and for future generations and the Democratic Party is working towards that end.

The Sierra Club, America's largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization, has published a list of their 2012 Political Endorsements.

They endorsed Barack Obama for President.

They endorsed 15 Democrats and 1 Independent for the Senate.

They endorsed 166 Democrats for the House.

They have not endorsed a single Republican.

Here are some of the reasons why the Sierra Club has endorsed so many Democrats and why time and again, our president has shown himself to be a wise and responsible steward of some of America's greatest gifts - our lands.

February 2009 - At the president's urging, Congress passed and President Obama signed into law the Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. Through this bill the National Park Service will invest $750 million in nearly 800 projects throughout the country. This accounts for nearly one-third of the entire $3 billion of Department of Interior Recovery Act funding. The National Park Service will also receive an additional $170 million through the Federal Highway Administration for work on Federal Highway System roads in national parks.  This Department of the Interior link details how the recovery dollars are being spent and features an interactive map so you can click on your state to see what projects have been done there.

March 2009 -  President Obama signed the Democratic led Omnibus Public Lands Management Act, a  a sweeping conservation measure that will protect and preserve America’s forests, rivers, oceans, national parks, monuments, and public lands for future generations.

At the signing, President Obama made these remarks:

"As Americans, we possess few blessings greater than the vast and varied landscapes that stretch the breadth of our continent. Our lands have always provided great bounty -- food and shelter for the first Americans, for settlers and pioneers; the raw materials that grew our industry; the energy that powers our economy.

What these gifts require in return is our wise and responsible stewardship. As our greatest conservationist President, Teddy Roosevelt, put it almost a century ago, "I recognize the right and duty of this generation to develop and use the natural resources of our land; but I do not recognize the right to waste them, or to rob, by wasteful use, the generations that come after us."

April 2010 - President Obama signed a Presidential Memorandum launching the America’s Great Outdoors Initiative, which focuses on promoting community-level efforts to conserve outdoor spaces. As part of the initiative, members of the administration will host regional sessions with groups and individuals across the country to discuss ideas on how to protect America’s natural landscape and form a 21st century strategy conservation agenda.

President Obama followed in Roosevelt's footsteps on a trip to Yellowstone National Park last summer, a longtime tradition of American Presidents. Watch footage of the First Family's visit to Yellowstone.

Yes We Will - Together Moving Forward

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Originally posted to I Vote for Democrats on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 02:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by North Carolina BLUE, National Parks and Wildlife Refuges, J Town, Public Lands, and Community Spotlight.

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