In a joint letter to Tucson-area congressman Raul Grijalva, Arizona Senators John McCain and Jon Kyl express concern that his
proposal to withdraw 1.1 million acres of federal land from all future mineral location [right], entry and development would violate the spirit of a historic agreement between the mining industry and the environmental community as embodied by the Arizona Wilderness Act, and begin to unravel decades of balanced, responsible resource development and wilderness protection near Grand Canyon National Park.They go on to state that
the mere threat of a withdrawal has had effects similar to the consequences of closing these lands to mining. For example, banks are growing reluctant to lend money for mineral exploration and development and the mining industry is hesitant to commit financial capital to projects. The kind of heavy-handed government interference your bill proposes would also likely make subsequent validation of existing mining claims problematic.It strikes me that these latter problems are exactly what opponents to uranium exploration in the area are hoping to achieve, so Mssrs Kyl and McCain's letter just acknowledges their success.