Posted by azBlueMeanie:
"Sen. Atomic Al Melvin needs his nuclear reactor, damnit! And we Republicans are going to provide him the fuel for it."
The Arizona Republican Caucus today vowed to desecrate the Grand Canyon by opening it up for uranium mining. The Arizona Democratic Party has responded in this press release:
AZ Republicans push to open Grand Canyon
to uranium mining
GOP prioritizes risky mining proposal over Northern Arizona
Arizona’s Republican delegation showed again today that they are determined to open up one of the state’s most precious assets, and a national point of pride, to uranium mining. The Republican delegation, led by U.S. Sen. John McCain and Reps. Jeff Flake and Paul Gosar, has put forward legislation that would give mining companies access to one million acres of public land – including the Grand Canyon National Park’s watershed.
The Grand Canyon is not just the crown jewel of the state, but also is an integral part of the state’s economy and an invaluable resource, as much of Arizona’s water flows through the Colorado River. The Arizona Republican delegation’s decision to prioritize the mining industry over communities at the risk of a potential environmental disaster is unconscionable.
“Jeff Flake, John McCain, Ben Quayle, Paul Gosar and the rest of Arizona’s Republican delegation showed again today that their priorities fall well outside the mainstream,” said Arizona Democratic Party executive director Luis Heredia. “Rather than looking out for the families and tribal communities of Arizona, they have sided with the mining companies and their risky proposal to mine for uranium in and around the Grand Canyon.”
“If Republicans were so interested in creating jobs, they would focus on growing the sustainable economy in Northern Arizona – not providing a short-term spike in profits for mining companies,” Heredia said.
In addition, the House Democratic Caucus has issued this press release from Rep. Daniel Patterson (LD 29):
Patterson: ‘GOP plan to harm Ariz. wilderness, health destructive’
STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX — Rep. Daniel Patterson, D-Tucson (District 29), said he opposes Arizona’s Republican Congressmen’s plan to endanger public safety and health by introducing a bill to allow dangerous uranium mining near the Grand Canyon.
In a press release issued today by Sen. John McCain, Congressman Jeff Flake claimed: “... Arizona’s federal, state, and local officials oppose a moratorium on such mining."
But Patterson and other Democratic state officials oppose the dangerous mining of uranium, a nonrenewable resource, in Arizona’s wilderness and support tourism jobs and revenue instead.
“Uranium mining has a disastrous history from deadly abandoned sites to dams breached and radioactive waste seeping into aquifers and contaminating water,” Patterson said. “We already know uranium mining isn’t a good idea. It’s a threat to public health and safety as well as to the tourism business in Arizona. Along with other fellow House Democrats, for years I asked the federal government to make sure that our state’s natural wonder, wildlife and beautiful lands that draw millions here from all over the world are protected from those who threaten to destroy it.”
Patterson is an ecologist and the ranking member on the Arizona House Energy and Natural Resources Committee.