- Associated Press - Monday, January 22, 2018

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - The federal government says lawsuits challenging President Donald Trump’s decision to drastically shrink two Utah national monuments should be tried in Utah rather than Washington, D.C.

Court documents show the U.S. Department of Justice filed court documents last week arguing that strong local interest outweighs the plaintiffs’ selection of Washington to file five separate legal challenges.

They lawsuits were filed by outdoor retailer Patagonia, several environmental groups and a coalition of Native American tribes.

Those groups haven’t yet responded to the government’s request to move the cases.

Trump announced his decision on Dec. 4 to reduce the boundaries of the lands. He said was reversing federal overreach, but tribes and conservationists say the decision strips key protections for sacred and important lands.

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