Koch Brothers Help Fund Anti-Grand Canyon Monument, Pro-Uranium Mining Efforts in Arizona, Tax Documents Show

A string of dark-money organizations with ties to the billionaire Koch brothers is helping Arizona politicians and special-interest groups fight the popular Grand Canyon National Heritage Monument proposal, tax documents show.

The money trail begins with a conservative political advocacy organization funded in part by Charles and David Koch and their vast donor network, and ends with a coordinated ground campaign intended to undermine public support for the monument.

The proposed monument, which would grant federal protection to 1.7 million acres of land in the Grand Canyon watershed and permanently ban uranium mining in the area, is supported by environmental organizations, native tribes, and the public – 80 percent of the public, to be precise. Yet a handful of powerful Republican politicians and industry groups are hellbent on killing it, and they’re apparently using money from the Koch brothers’ donor network to do so.

“The thing that’s so fascinating to me,” Greg Zimmerman (the man who discovered the dark money connection) says, “is that the polls show [the monument] is overwhelmingly popular across Arizona, and yet the political establishment in the state is so diabolically opposed to it.”

He says he always was baffled by these “politicians going against their constituents” until he realized “the connections between the political establishment and billionaire industrialists. Then it starts to make sense.”

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