Republican’s Attempt to Force Obama into Hurried Decision on Keystone XL May Backfire, Killing Pipeline


Read this blog from the Natural Resources Defense Council, detailing how the forced inclusion by Republicans of a requirement for President Obama to make his decision on the controversial Keystone XL Pipeline in 60 days may very well amount to a Pyrrhic victory, forcing Obama to kill the pipeline altogether.

NRDC responded by calling out the inclusion as nothing but a political ploy.  My colleague Susan Casey-Lefkowitz, issued the following statement:

“Special interest riders do not belong in legislation designed to
help the American people. Republicans took the payroll tax-cut extension
bill hostage and delivered a year-end bonus to Big Oil. The president
went along in order to save hard-working Americans from a tax increase
on January 1, 2012. We get that.

“But with the Republicans forcing the president’s hand, he will have
no choice but to reject the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline as not in the
national interest.”

The President said last week that he would not accept the inclusion of the pipeline tacked on to the tax extension legislation.  

Yesterday evening, a senior Administration official made it clear the
President intends to stand by his statement.  In a Reuters piece
entitled, “Obama backs tax deal but pipeline now in doubt”,
the senior official is quoted saying that Republican insistence means
the pipeline ”almost certainly will not be built” because the President
has made clear that he will not approve the pipeline without time for an
adequate review of the health, safety and environmental risks.

view was echoed by Senate Democrats.  Senator Schumer, commenting to
Bloomberg News, said that the inclusion of the provision was a “Pyrric victory” for the Republicans because the President won’t be forced into a decision.
(Dec. 17, 2011)

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