Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard declined an invitation to testify before Congress on federal land policies under President Donald Trump, Western Wire reports.
“I find it disingenuous that after unethically using taxpayers’ resources to call us liars, you would ask me to testify in front of a committee for a matter already decided by the administration and applauded by the Utah delegation,” Chouinard wrote in a blog post responding to House Committee on Natural Resources chairman Rob Bishop’s offer.
Bishop extended the invitation following Patagonia’s critical stance against Trump’s decision to cut two national monuments in Utah by millions of acres. The outdoor outfitter joined a lawsuit challenging the changes made to one of the monuments, Bears Ears National Monument, according to Western Wire.
Bishop sent a letter to Chouinard on the premise that “open discussion and debate in Congress is the best venue for the public policy debate on land management policy to occur.”
Patagonia’s feud with the Trump administration and lawmakers supportive of Trump’s decision to cut Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments began when the homepage of Patagonia’s website was changed to read “The President stole your land,” according to Reuters.
Patagonia accused the administration of selling out to industry interests wanting to develop the land for oil and gas and mining.
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke responded a short time later.
“You mean Patagonia, made in China? This is an example of a special interest,” Zinke said. “I think it is shameful and appalling that they would blatantly lie in order to get money in their coffers. No land, not one square inch, has been transferred or sold.”
Patagonia’s clothing is made in China, the U.S. and many other countries.
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