"The House [Thursday] approved a land exchange that paves the way for a long-contested road through Alaska's Izembek National Wildlife Refuge, rejecting arguments by Democrats that the road will harm sensitive wildlife and open other refuges to development.
Alaska Republican Rep. Don Young's H.R. 218 passed by a 248-179 vote, mostly along party lines. Fifteen Democrats voted for it and three Republicans against.
The bill calls for exchanging more than 43,000 acres of state land for 206 acres of federal land within the wildlife refuge that would be used to build an 11-mile, single-lane gravel road connecting the towns of King Cove and Cold Bay."