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Interior Secretary Ken Salazar blasted Republican senators Wednesday for voting down his pick for deputy secretary. The Senate's 57-39 vote fell three votes shy of the 60 votes required to thwart a threatened Republican filibuster against the nomination of David Hayes, an environmental lawyer who served as Interior's No. 2 for the last three years of the Clinton administration. It was the first time the Senate has blocked an Obama nomination.
The U.S. Forest Service Monday gutted a federal oil and gas lease auction scheduled for Thursday, removing approximately 67,000 acres of national Forest in southwest Colorado deemed sensitive wildlife habitat by environmentalists and state and local government officials.
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar Wednesday did a 180 on an 11th-hour Bush administration oil and gas lease sale of 77 parcels on U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands in Utah near such sensitive areas as Arches and Canyonlands national parks.