Fox News’ Sean Hannity and his crew came to California’s Central Valley last week to hold a rally that lambasted environmental protections for the delta smelt, Sacramento River winter-run chinook salmon, Central Valley spring-run chinook salmon, Central Valley steelhead, green sturgeon, and southern resident killer whales.
According to recent biological opinions by federal government scientists, all these species depend on a healthy San Francisco Bay-Delta for their survival. Earthjustice lawyers led the team that overturned Bush administration rules that imperiled the Delta by allowing excessive water exports to industrial agriculture in the Valley.
The Hannity event was largely an excuse to bash the Obama administration and nothing could stop the parade.
Not even facts.
Here’s a local TV station’s account of the event.
What was heard at the rally were repeated calls by the crowd to turn on the massive pumps that divert water out of the California Aqueduct into the farmers’ irrigation canals. But Fresno Congressman Jim Costa—the only Democrat to address the event—said there was some misinformation.
"The pumps have been turned on since July 1st. They are running at full capacity," Costa said.
Half a mile away from the event, the California Aqueduct was brimming with water.
"That aqueduct wouldn’t have water in it right now if the pumps weren’t running." Costa said. Costa, who is a longtime advocate for the Valley’s Agribusiness, was booed by the partisan crowd.