President Barack Obama is certainly sensitive enough to know the difference between, say, Republican Gov. Mike Pence of Indiana and Republican Gov. Charlie Baker of Massachusetts.

So we assume partisan politics had nothing to do with the declaration last week of the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument, which leaves us scratching our heads.

Gov. Baker sees the monument designation of nearly 5,000 square miles of ocean as undermining commercial fishermen. We imagine that he, like many of us, wonders why the action came while federal regulators and regional ocean planners were developing a plan that balances environmentalism with impacts on the fisheries.

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