Obama: Little or No Benefit to Keystone Pipeline

December 19, 2014

Tea-leaf readers, heads up.


WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama downplayed the benefits of building the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada on Friday. He said it would not lower gasoline prices and argued more jobs would be created by repairing America’s infrastructure.

He said the pipeline would mainly benefit Canadian oil companies that need to get Canadian oil to the Gulf of Mexico.

He said the pipeline is “not even a nominal benefit for U.S. consumers.”

Obama has resisted efforts by Republicans to authorize the pipeline’s construction. Incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said it would be the first bill taken up in the new GOP-controlled Senate.



7 Responses to “Obama: Little or No Benefit to Keystone Pipeline”

  1. dumboldguy Says:

    Well stated by Obama. It’s going to be a helluva ride once McConnell and the rest of The Wrecking Crew start trying to bully Obama and the country in January.

    • jimbills Says:

      It is well-stated, and the clearest message so far from him about Keystone. He also twice dodged the question about whether or not he would veto a McConnell bill. The end result is a still hazy picture of how his administration would act on either approval or rejection of the pipeline.

      • dumboldguy Says:

        Yep, and the “tea leaves” have been swirling up, down, and around the issue for years now. This latest bit may seem more positive but “it ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings”. If McConnell keeps his word and pushes on it, the “haze” may clear soon because Obama will be forced to act.

        • MorinMoss Says:

          In some ways, I’m disappointed that Obama has drawn the line in the sand so clearly when he was so wishy-washy on climate action in the early years of his admin.

          The problem that I see is that the GOP thrives on confrontation and I was hoping he’d frustrate them more by blowing sweet promising kisses while not actually doing anything for their benefit.
          I think his base felt that was how they were being treated prior to his re-election.

          And if McConnell does get a Keystone bill passed, then I’m hoping for a “pocket” veto instead of an explicit one.

  2. MorinMoss Says:

    So after all the claims about how Obama is destroying the country, the very FIRST thing the GOP plans to do is a pipeline bill for tar sands oil destined for foreign markets?
    When crude & pump prices are falling, making that tar sands gunk less affordable?
    Bold plan from the party of fiscal responsibility.

    • jimbills Says:

      The pipeline itself wouldn’t have much effect on prices. It would raise diesel prices a bit in the Midwest, but other than that it would have almost no effect. The pipeline is a stimulus for the Canadian oil companies and oil refiners (Koch), because it would lower costs on their end, resulting in higher profits.

      The long-term effect would be to make the tar sands more legitimate as a business venture, which is certainly bad news for the world, when viewed environmentally instead of economically.

      The GOP is about self-interest, first and foremost. Follow the money, and it’s clear what’s going on. ‘Fiscal responsibility’ is about making sure the money goes to their pals and not others.

      I caught the “tea leave readers” thing, btw. Ouch. There might be a difference between deciphering political trends and reading tea leaves, but okay.

      • jimbills Says:

        What’s happening with the tar sands is that they’re getting ‘trapped’ in North America. They’re not really trapped, but it costs more for the producers and refiners and to ship it outside the continent by rail and truck. Pipelines take much of this problem out, so the oil can reach the world market at a lower cost, where it would be sold at a higher world price instead of at a local, over-supplied area. It’s purely of benefit to the producers and refiners. The average U.S. citizen wouldn’t get much, except a few temporary jobs, the possibility of having their land forcibly sold due to right-of-way issues, slightly higher diesel prices in the Midwest, and potentially higher food costs as a result.

        The Kochs would love it, though.

        In the longer-term, it makes the tar sands more financially legitimate, which makes their further exploitation a greater possibility.

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