On the other side of the Capitol, Alaska Congressman Don Young attended the only other congressional hearing on this snowy day in Washington, and he created a stir with a comment about homeless people.
Interior Secretary Sally Jewell was defending her budget to the House Natural Resources Committee. Young is no fan of Jewell, but he actually supported her department’s 2011 decision to delist the grey wolf from the endangered species list. Instead, Young turned his ire on Congress members who asked Jewell not to delist.
“The grey wolf in fact is a predator which is killing the cloven-hoof animals. And we’ve got 79 Congressmen sending you a letter,” Young said. “Haven’t got a damn wolf in their whole district. I’d like to introduce them in your district. I introduce them in your district, you wouldn’t have a homeless problem anymore.”
In a written statement afterward, Young said he was employing analogy and hyperbole to point out that wolves are a problem for communities that have them. “If you misunderstood my comments,” Young said in the statement is office put out, “just imagine the impact a healthy wolf population would have on your own town, community, or congressional district.”