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Contest Promotes Utah Hunting Trip With President Trump's Son

Gage Skidmore
Flickr Creative Commons

The conservative sportsmens’ group Hunter Nation is offering people the chance to go elk hunting in Utah with President Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr.

“He’s the real deal,” said Keith Mark, co-founder of Hunter Nation. “I’ve personally hunted with him multiple times. He’s an excellent shot.”

Trump Jr. is an avid big game hunter who has been widely criticized over his participation in African trophy hunting trips. In 2018, the Trump administration quietly lifted a ban on importing elephant tusks and other trophies from Zimbabwe.

But Mark said the president’s son is a responsible hunter.

“He doesn’t take his hunting and conservation responsibility lightly,” he said. “He recognizes the key role that hunters play in conservation.”

The sweepstakes costs $10 to enter. The winner receives an all-expenses-paid, five-day hunting trip with Trump Jr. The money raised will go to Hunter Nation.

The nonprofit was created in late 2018 but already touts some celebrities in its roster, including conservative rock n’ roller Ted Nugent and former U.S. Congressman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah). It advocates for greater access to public land, reforming the Endangered Species Act and stronger predator management.

“We’ve been very concerned with how wolves have been managed,” Mark said. “Especially in the West.”

Some hunting groups have blamed wolves for population declines among elk and deer in the Mountain West. Hunting Nation was co-founded by Mark and Don Peay, a former Trump state campaign manager for Utah.

In 2018, Peay was tapped to join the Trump administration’s Hunting and Shooting Sports Conservation Council.

This story was produced by the Mountain West News Bureau, a collaboration between Wyoming Public Media, Boise State Public Radio in Idaho, KUER in Salt Lake City and KRCC and KUNC in Colorado.

Nate Hegyi is the Utah reporter for the Mountain West News Bureau, based at KUER. He covers federal land management agencies, indigenous issues, and the environment. Before arriving in Salt Lake City, Nate worked at Yellowstone Public Radio, Montana Public Radio, and was an intern with NPR's Morning Edition. He received a master's in journalism from the University of Montana.
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