Keystone XL Pipeline a hot issue

2012-01-23T00:06:00Z Keystone XL Pipeline a hot issueIndependent Record Helena Independent Record
January 23, 2012 12:06 am  • 

All it takes to draw a reaction from all parts of the political spectrum is a major announcement on a hot-button policy issue. Take this week’s announcement by the White House that it was denying the current application to build the Keystone XL Pipeline to carry crude oil from Alberta to the Gulf Coast. TransCanada is welcome to submit another application with an alternate route, but this week’s announcement may delay an ultimate up-or-down decision on the pipeline until after this fall’s elections.

Reaction to the decision was swift from all corners. All three of Montana’s representatives in Congress support the project and told us they disagreed with the decision, as did Attorney General Steve Bullock and Steve Daines, the Bozeman Republican running for Congress.

Plenty of special interest groups weighed in as well, with varying degrees of hyperbole.

The Young Republican National Federation told us that “President Obama has pandered to the worst instincts of his liberal supporters against American jobs and national security... President Obama has guaranteed that the Chinese will invest in energy resources in Canada.”

The Center for Rural Affairs took the other side and approved of this week’s decision: “We applaud President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton for making a common sense decision that protects both Nebraska and the entire nation,” said Johnathon Hladik, Energy Policy Advocate. “Approving the Keystone XL pipeline without an established route through Nebraska would amount to a failure on the part of our federal government to consider the best interests of the American people.”

The Sierra Club noted that the fight is not over: “Big Oil companies have launched an all-out assault on the president for not doing their bidding on Keystone XL. We will undoubtedly see a barrage of misinformation on Keystone XL from Big Oil in the form of flashy ads attacking the president.”

Friends of the Earth also supported the decision, and praised lots of folks for their role: “Victory belongs to the indigenous communities who first sounded the alarm on the dangers of tar sands extraction. To the Nebraska farmers and Texan ranchers who withstood TransCanada’s bullying to protect their land and water. To the 1,253 people, from college students to grandmothers (including a number of Friends of the Earth members, staff and activists), who were arrested on President Obama’s doorstep urging him to say no.”

Interestingly, although Jon Tester supports the project, the campaign of Denny Rehberg tied him to the decision delaying the pipeline: “Today’s job-killing decision by Tester’s allies in the Obama Administration hands a victory to the radical environmental obstructionists who bankroll Tester’s re-election campaign, and strikes a harsh blow to Montana workers and families who would have benefited from thousands of pipeline jobs and a projected $7.5 million in revenues added to Montana’s state treasury.”

A final decision on the pipeline is still to come. In the meantime, we can expect no shortage of opinions on whether the project is good or bad for the country, the oil industry and the environment.

Copyright 2016 Helena Independent Record. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(5) Comments

  1. cycleinslomo
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    cycleinslomo - January 24, 2012 9:00 am
    The IR article intentionally sensationalizes this issue. The most reasonable and least reported fact is that the Republican Congress demanded approval for a project that isn't a project yet! Nebraska denied Keystone a route though that state, so there is NO continuous pipeline route to approve. Keystone admits that it won't have a route worked out until Summer 2012.

    Here's the reasonable comment (included in the article under "hyperbole": "...a common sense decision that protects both Nebraska and the entire nation,” said Johnathon Hladik, Energy Policy Advocate. “Approving the Keystone XL pipeline without an established route through Nebraska would amount to a failure on the part of our federal government to consider the best interests of the American people.”

    I thought Republicans were for states' rights!
  2. Limber
    Report Abuse
    Limber - January 24, 2012 8:56 am
    Buy a $200,000 home: Fill out an application that’s like a national security clearance. Title search? What for!? Origination fee? Hey, they’re getting six figures in interest down the road, what gives? Appraisal? But we’ve already agreed on what it’s worth! $400 for Inspection? C’mon! Two real estate commissions? No, really, two? $12,000 in commissions for what—a couple of newspaper ads, and a fancy yard sign? And 50 pages of small print legal mumbo jumbo and sign in 17 different places. We all go through that, but we don’t get the key ‘till we’ve crossed every T and dotted every I. Now the governor of Nebraska wants the president to fast track a permit worth $7 billion to big oil on a handshake and a promise to work those details out as we go along. I don’t think so. As Reagan once famously said, “Trust, but verify?”
  3. wonkerbean
    Report Abuse
    wonkerbean - January 23, 2012 12:59 pm
    Why don't you cite the independent estimates of the number of jobs created by this boondoggle? We can expect the company to bring their own workers from Canada. Why do they have to ship all that oil all the way to the Gulf coast? Why can't they ship it to Vancouver, which is closer to its final destination in China? The whole operation is fishy, the most employment that it will generate is that for cleaning up the mess.
  4. Curmudgeon
    Report Abuse
    Curmudgeon - January 23, 2012 10:16 am
    I-R, you mention varying degrees of hyperbole. How about this language from the Rehberg HQ?

    "...radical environmental obstructionists..."

    Time for Denny to follow Gabby Giffords' example (resignation)? At least Giffords has a legitimate reason, her healh problems.
  5. Dump Denny Rehberg
    Report Abuse
    Dump Denny Rehberg - January 23, 2012 9:52 am
    "Interestingly"? That's the adverb you choose?

    2nd to last para: "Interestingly, although Jon Tester supports the project..."

    It is not "interesting" that Denny Rehberg is tying Tester to a position Tester doesn't hold.

    Other, more accurate words that should have been utilized: Duplicitously, Dishonestly, Shadily, Intentionally, Knowingly, Shamefully, Disrespectfully, etc.

    Or you could have said: In a bid to trick voters, again, or Just as he's lied about so many other important things... the list goes on and on.

    Yet you chose "Interestingly".

    Please, when you smell a rat, call it a rat.

    We all function better with the truth.

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