Rep. Simpson Continues Wilderness Fight
KETCHUM, Idaho (AP) – Republican U.S. Rep. Mike Simpson pledged to stick by efforts to designate 330,000 acres in central Idaho as wilderness, but said he has no idea when his longtime dream will be realized. The Idaho Mountain Express reported Wednesday that Simpson was speaking this week to a group of environmentalists in Stanley. At the event, the seven-term lawmaker renewed his commitment to the Boulder and White Cloud Mountains wilderness proposal. Simpsons has been working on the plan for a decade. But he’s always faltered in getting a bill through Congress, in part because his fellow congressmen from Idaho don’t support the plan and because Idaho Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter has also refused to back it. Simpson acknowledges the uphill nature of his battle, citing a “hatred” of the word wilderness.