Barack Obama

President Obama Vetoes Keystone XL Pipeline Legislation

Evidently bows to environmentalist lobby


Keystone Demonstration

The U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives passed a bill that would authorize the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada. The pipeline would transport 830,000 barrels per day of Alberta oil sands crude to Gulf Coast refineries. Since it crosses an international border the executive branch must rule that the pipeline is in the national interest before construction can go ahead. Opposition to the pipeline has become a huge symbolic activity for environmental lobbyists and President Obama looks likely to bow to their demands.

In his veto message the president declared:

Through this bill, the United States Congress attempts to circumvent longstanding and proven processes for determining whether or not building and operating a cross-border pipeline serves the national interest.

The Presidential power to veto legislation is one I take seriously.  But I also take seriously my responsibility to the American people.  And because this act of Congress conflicts with established executive branch procedures and cuts short thorough consideration of issues that could bear on our national interest—including our security, safety, and environment—it has earned my veto.

In actual fact, the State Department's analyses have found the pipeline to be in the national interest already, but the issue has been sent back for further consideration by the bureaucrats until they come up with the right answer.

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  1. Evidently bows to environmentalist lobby

    What is the House of Saud, chopped liver?

    1. with any luck…

  2. The top comment on the NPR Keystone Pipeline story was this:

    “Such a breath of fresh air when a president will stand against even members of his own party to do the right thing, rather than what the polls say is the popular thing.”

    Followed by the obligatory:

    The Koch’s are furious. No wonder they are willing to spend a billion to buy a president who will do their bidding.

    1. Did said commenters illuminate WHY it was the right thing? I would be curious to see their reasoning.

      1. It protects Warren Buffet’s oil industry profits while transferring refining business to China.


      2. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and suggest that it was the right thing based on their FEEEEEEEELZ!!11!!

      3. Subliminal messaging hidden in pop culture?

    2. Wait, IIRC the Kochs are not involved with the KS pipeline. I assume they are furious because the Earth is not being lain waste by the Devil’s Liquid?

      1. Anything that involves money Republicans anything they don’t like has the Koch brothers behind it.

      2. They’re furious because the idiot commenter just knows what they think. Because they’re psychic or something. The fact that the Kochs don’t have anything to do with the pipeline doesn’t mean shit. Because this person knows what they think. Because the Koch brothers are evil or something, and therefore…

        I have to stop before I become retarded too.


    3. Such a breath of fresh air when a president will stand against even members of his own party to do the right thing, rather than what the polls say is the popular thing.

      Yeah. That whole “government of the people through elected representatives” thingy is just so…quaint.

  3. Obama is such a dick.

    1. The NPR commentariat would have you drawn and quartered for such a comment. Then they would politely remind your remains that they aren’t partisan shills and vote on issues.

    2. Truly. I get Hanlon’s Razor and all but I sometimes wonder. At some point it really does start to look like he’s trying to ruin the nation.

    3. Yeah, the way he worded the Veto- “circumventing longstanding processes”- was a giant fuck you to Congress.

      This supposed “longstanding process” he’s referring to is the State Dept review of the project, which has been ongoing for SIX YEARS.

      1. “the United States Congress attempts to circumvent longstanding and proven processes “

        Sorta like how you started that war in Iraq after you ‘ended’ it, or like how you ‘reformed’ immigration after your party’s position on the issue was roundly rejected in a mid-term election?

        Seems legit

      2. His entire administration has been about circumventing longstanding processes.

        1. It’s the Chicago Way.

          1. Might one say it’s a longstanding Chicago process?

  4. You all know damn well that when, ten years from now, gasoline prices are soaring, there will be pundits saying “Dammit, we could have had that XL pipeline, if only the Kochs and their teabagger minions hadn’t stopped it.”

  5. this act of Congress conflicts with established executive branch procedures

    Umm, acts of Congress are legislative branch procedures and that stuff you may or may not have studied on your way to becoming a Constitutional scholar about checks and balances and division of powers among three co-equal branches of government means that Congress doesn’t give a shit about “how we do things up North”. We know all about your “established executive branch procedures”.

  6. I think it needs to be understood that the entire “keystone” issue is/was, in the most basic analysis, nothing to do with the ‘environment’

    It is/was/will be entirely to do with a political symbolism, and a pissing match over “who has the power”

    that’s all it is. “winning” here became of a matter of progressives showing that they can still throw their dick around and cause some people grief. Zero actual benefits to anyone from a policy POV other than ensuring that ‘activists’ can still rally enough popular sentiment to fuck up the broader economy.

  7. The president is one stupid motherfucker. And a prick. Fuck him.

  8. Farmers and Ranchers have experience with pipelines. Quite righteously, they don’t want their property turned into Superfund sites when they leak.

      1. Well, you see Francisco…there are no actual ‘ranchers or farmers’ in barren, pipeline-crisscrossed places like Nebraska or Oklahoma or Iowa or Texas… no, these places are just giant puddles of crude from the constantly-leaking pipelines, whose technology is so new and untested that they present an unacceptable risk

        this is why oil should obviously be shipped via rail, despite the far higher cost, risk of accident, and far higher energy-waste

        how can you refute the obvious wisdom of this “environmental” logic?

      2. Looks like a picture of the Kochtopus strangling our nation to me!

    1. As we all know, there is no way for an oil tank pulled by a train or a truck to leak.

    2. croaker|2.24.15 @ 6:49PM|#
      “Farmers and Ranchers have experience with pipelines.”

      And croaker has experience with bullshit.

    3. But that’s no reason why they can’t be friends.

  9. “In actual fact, the State Department’s analyses have found the pipeline to be in the national interest already”

    Imagine that! The lying son of a bitch lied again!

  10. Would eminent domain need to be invoked to get the pipeline built?

    1. Yes, and a Nebraska court has rule that the use of eminent domain by Trans Canada was not legal, so it will now get appealed to the Nebraska Supreme Court, which could take anywhere from 1 to 3 years. So regardless of what the President just did, it wasn’t going to happen for awhile anyway.

    2. Eminent domain? Surely our dear Koch Bros would never sully their hands with anything involving that!

  11. And the right answer is in fact to stop its construction…if one believes that climate change is a threat to security (the Pentagon says it is), safety and the environment (science says it is). Like he said, that is his responsibility to the American people, regardless of what the State Department suggested. And anyway, who knew you would put so much credence into what any governmental department had to say.

    Good for him.

  12. So, I see that Dutch Royal Shell just pulled out of plans for further tar sands work in the Pierre River project in Alberta.

    Sure, its due in part to low prices in oil, but its also due the expenses incurred in costly tar sands oil, which is one reason the pipeline was needed…to reduce costs.

    See? Its not only symbolic to stop the pipeline…it also is doing what is needed…deter further exploration there, and keep as much of it as possible in the ground.

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