President Trump’s wildlife protection advisory board, appointed by interior secretary Ryan Zinke, was created to assist in the rewrite of federal rules importing the heads and hides of African elephants, rhinos and lions as trophies.
Many on the advisory board argued that threatened and endangered species would go extinct without the anti-poaching programs that are primarily funded by the fees the wealthy pay to shoot some of them.
“As long as an animal has value, it will exist,” Retired Oklahoma Congressman Bill Brewster who was unanimously selected as chairman of the board said. “Most of us in this room enjoy hunting. But first has to come conservation and habitat preservation. Without that, there is no hunting.”
Zinke, a former Montana congressman who is an avid hunter, has quickly reversed many Obama-era restrictions on bringing trophies from African animals into the U.S.
Although Trump had openly tweeted about being against hunting, some members of this advisory board have direct ties with the president and his family.
I'm not a hunter and don't approve of killing animals. I strongly disagree with my sons who are hunters, but (cont) http://t.co/eE5G0Eo8
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 15, 2012