Standing up for the Antiquities Act

In 1906, Republican President Theodore Roosevelt signed the Antiquities Act into law. 

Bureau of Land Management

The Antiquities Act still has bipartisan support in Congress and the White House, just as it did in 1906 when Republican President Theodore Roosevelt signed it into law.

In a letter to Rep. Mike Simpson (R, ID-2) Chairman of the Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies, five Republican Congressmen asked him to stand up for the Antiquities Act by opposing any amendment that would undermine the president’s authority to designate national monuments.

The Antiquities Act has been used by nearly every president to protect places that define America -- from the Statue of Liberty to the Grand Canyon. Most recently, President Obama used the Antiquities Act to protect Rio Grande del Norte National Monument in Northern New Mexico and the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Monument in Maryland.

Even though there is strong support for the Antiquities Act in communities across the United States, a few members of Congress have tried to do away with this time-tested law.

Thankfully, Reps. Mike Fitzpatrick (R, PA-8), Richard Hanna (R, NY-22), Peter King (R, NY-2), Chris Gibson (R, NY-19) and Michael Grimm (R, NY-11) have stood up in favor of this bipartisan law.

In the letter, the members of Congress wrote,

“There is a longstanding and bipartisan history of U.S. presidents using the Antiquities Act for the benefit of future generations… Spanning more than a century, presidents from both political parties have regularly used the act to designate approximately 130 national monuments… For over 100 years the Antiquities Act has helped our country preserve elements of its history, character and natural legacy.”