Federal judge denies rehearing on mining ban

Federal law permits Interior to remove 5,000 or more acres of public land from hard-rock mining claims for up to 20 years without congressional approval.

The move was a flashpoint for environmental groups in the Arizona Senate race last year.

Green groups blasted eventual winner Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeMcCain rips Trump for attacks on press Bipartisan group to introduce DACA bill in House Flake's anti-Trump speech will make a lot of noise, but not much sense MORE (R-Ariz.) for attempting to reinstate mining claims on the land in a rider to the fiscal 2012 Interior appropriations bill.