Mike Brownfield writes at the Heritage Foundation's Morning Bell:
Over the last several months, radical environmentalists along with Hollywood celebrity activists descended on the White House in protest, urging President Barack Obama to block the construction of the $7 billion pipeline that would bring in more than 700,000 barrels of oil per day from Alberta, Canada, to the Texas Gulf coast. Last week, they got their wish.Scaremongering environmentalists whose doom and gloom hype knows no bounds successfully forced this delay even though the Obama Administration had determined their were few environmental risks.
The Obama Administration on Thursday announced that it would delay a decision on the pipeline until after the 2012 election. In siding with his leftist environmentalist, big Hollywood base, President Obama’s ambition is nakedly apparent, as is his total disregard for the 14 million unemployed Americans sitting on the sidelines, waiting for Washington to get out of the way so they can get back to work. And it also shows that for him, politics is more important than achieving true energy independence for the United States.
And here’s why: The Keystone pipeline would have done what the President’s hundreds of billions of dollars in stimulus spending failed to do. It would have created thousands of jobs (tens of thousands, by some predictions), while generating $5.2 billion in property tax revenue for Montana, South Dakota, Kansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, and Texas. And it would have done it all with private dollars–not taxpayer dollars.
But now actor Robert Redford and his no-nothing Hollywood buddies who always want to tell the little people how to live are happy with Obama's decision.
Here's the kicker from The Hill:
The Obama administration’s decision to postpone a verdict on the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline might boost President Obama’s difficult reelection campaign.In the same article former Clinton aide Paul Bledsoe praised Obama's move: "Nothing is more populist than avoiding a decision that pits one important policy objective and constituency versus another."
The administration said Thursday that it would review alternative routes for the proposed pipeline, pushing a final decision on the project well past Election Day and into 2013.
The move buoyed environmentalists who mobilized against the pipeline with a series of headline-grabbing protests at the White House. They bluntly warned Obama that approval of the project would sap their appetite for working on his behalf in 2012.
Julian Zelizer, a professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University, said the delay helps neutralize the issue for the president.
“It helps in that postponing tough political decisions does dampen some of the heat the president must take going into Election Day,” Zelizer said. “The president can spin the issue any way he wants, leaving himself room by not clarifying what he will do.”
Reaction from Canada: Oil, and jobs, to go to China Instead?
Delay in the pipeline which runs from Canada across the United States has left the Canadians with little choice but to look elsewhere to market their energy. Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper informed President Obama on Sunday at the Asia-Pacific summit that he would move to sell the oil to Asia instead. Along with that sale would go jobs. Just as the oil rigs and the jobs that went with them left the Gulf of Mexico after Obama's moratorium on drilling created a worsened jobs situation in that region, this new decision, or lack of decision, will also have it's consequences.
So, Obama votes "present" once again in order to save his job at the expense of American jobs, higher tax revenues and cheaper energy. Does this sound like the action of a leader?