Newly published research by John Ruple, a research professor at the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law, contains the first and only comprehensive review of every prior national monument reductions that occurred as a result of presidential action.
Ruple’s article, The Trump Administration and Lessons Not Learned from Prior National Monument Modifications, is out this month in the new print issue of the Harvard Environmental Law Review. The research is important because president Donald Trump’s authority to reduce the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments is the subject of ongoing litigation, said Ruple.
“The president contends, in part, that he was justified in shrinking these monuments because several of his predecessors also reduced national monuments,” said Ruple. He said his article demonstrates that there is no historical precedent for Trump’s reductions. His article also argues that there is little evidence indicating that Congress intended to endow the president with the power to dramatically reduce national monuments. Instead, Congress appeared intent on retaining those powers for itself, he said.
Ruple is available for media interviews related to the research.