Mary Landrieu not quite ready to take “no” for an answer on a Keystone XL deadline

posted at 5:21 pm on April 11, 2014 by Erika Johnsen

An addendum to yesterday’s post about the eleven Senate Democrats trying to make some noise about the Keystone XL pipeline before their tough reelection contests and push President Obama into committing to a deadline after more than five years of exaggerated and exhaustive review: The White House wasn’t having it.

White House press secretary Jay Carney attempted to sideline any noise that President Obama would establish a hard deadline for his decision on the Keystone XL pipeline Thursday.

“Our position on that process hasn’t changed, which is that it needs to run its appropriate course without interference from the White House or Congress,” Carney said to reporters. “It was because of actions taken by Republicans in Congress that one delay was caused in the process already.”

“So that review continues at the State Department, where it’s housed in accordance with past practice of previous administrations of both parties. And when there’s a decision to be announced, it will be announced,” Carney said.

And vulnerable red-state Sen. Mary Landrieu, in her own turn, wasn’t having that. Whether she’s raising the roof on this because a Keystone XL pipeline approval would be super helpful for her campaign, or because chastising and differentiating herself from President Obama is super helpful for her campaign, or both, she is definitely looking to make this a huge not-ObamaCare issue:

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) is threatening to push legislation to speed the approval of the Keystone XL pipeline, unless the Obama administration agrees to set a firm deadline for deciding the fate of the project.

She also plans to hold a hearing in May on building North America into an energy powerhouse, which will take a hard look at Keystone, an aide to Landrieu said in an email on Friday.

Also on Friday, I think it’s safe to say environmentalist groups are panicking about what looks like the increasingly likely possibility President Obama will use a Keystone XL pipeline approval to try and deliver a pre-midterm bump to his fellow Democrats (although, the small but well-monied and hysterically vocal minority might actually make an approval a drawback after all, so who even knows). They’re still looking for any excuse possible to draw out this review process and discredit the project’s all too obvious net benefits:

Opponents of the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline called again Friday on the Obama administration assess the project’s potential affects on public health before reaching a final decision. The request comes amid growing public and political support for the proposed pipeline between Canada and the United States.

Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), two of the Senate’s most liberal members and most ardent environmentalists, originally requested a public health study in late February but announced Friday that groups including the American Public Health Association and the National Association of County and City Health Officials were joining their push for the study. …

“We feel that children and families in the United States have a right to know how greatly expanding the importation of tar sands into our country is going to affect their lives,” Boxer told reporters as she announced the partnership with health professionals.


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Canada looks at us with much disappoint.

FontanaConservative on April 11, 2014 at 5:27 PM

Our position on that process hasn’t changed, which is that it needs to run its appropriate course without interference from the White House

Why start now?

rbj on April 11, 2014 at 5:27 PM

‘Cuz Landrieu is more important than Dingy Reid, the Obama administration, the Chinese, and the Bundy Ranch.

Great.

Resist We Much on April 11, 2014 at 5:30 PM

Obama has killed twice as many people as Bush.

Privatize It on April 11, 2014 at 5:32 PM

Well, they are doing it all for climate change, blocking the pipeline, and causing the price of gas to rise dramatically.

All to slightly reduce CO2 emissions. But there is actually zero evidence that CO2 affects climate temps. See the short 3 minute video on CO2 that changed me from a warmer to a skeptic: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WK_WyvfcJyg&info=GGWarmingSwindle_CO2Lag

anotherJoe on April 11, 2014 at 5:32 PM

“greatly expanding the importation of tar sands into our country”

Someone should explain to Senator Boxer that we’re not actually importing the sand – just the oil.

notropis on April 11, 2014 at 5:39 PM

Govt are effing meddlers to the nth degree…

I am so sick of them and their corruption and bully tactics on EVERYeffingTHING…

Scrumpy on April 11, 2014 at 6:02 PM

Erika (with a K)

Your portfolio clearly includes energy issues.

Nobody really cares about these issues right now. Bless your heart for constantly putting up these threads.

Happy Nomad on April 11, 2014 at 6:44 PM

This is singly the biggest case of kicking the can down the road that I’ve ever seen. Obama can’t say yes because the greenies will be against him and he can’t say no because big oil will be against him, so by dragging his feet for eight years, he gets to be everything to everyone.

John Deaux on April 11, 2014 at 7:15 PM

Only a moron wouldn’t care about energy issues and costs.

Anyone who works for a living, runs a business, manages a family has to consider how much energy costs have harmed the private sector and reduced its competitiveness. More spent for gas, heating, cooling and electric means less for food, less for productivity and less profits to be distributed as wages or available capital for growth.

Unless someone is a gummint leech, or trust fund baby energy costs will matter enormously to those carrying their own weight and enduring a federal bureaucracy hostile to business.

viking01 on April 11, 2014 at 7:24 PM

This is singly the biggest case of kicking the can down the road that I’ve ever seen. Obama can’t say yes because the greenies will be against him and he can’t say no because big oil will be against him, so by dragging his feet for eight years, he gets to be everything to everyone.

John Deaux on April 11, 2014 at 7:15 PM

“Big oil,” huh?

It’s the whole friggin country and especially conservatives that are against Obama trying to throw roadblocks wherever he can in the way of our economy and domestic energy production. Big oil my rear.

Nobody really cares…
Happy Nomad on April 11, 2014 at 6:44 PM

Well, I care. True, there are other perhaps more emotional issues that get more popular attention now, but energy and global warming climate change are critically important issues. And also the popularity of a post depends on various things, as some energy or climate change posts get hundreds of comments. Either way, these posts need to keep on coming! We need to know, even if the posts don’t always get several pages of comments.

anotherJoe on April 11, 2014 at 7:34 PM

Ah, Babs Boxcar sez that if we don’t kill Keystone, it will kill the children! That insipid, illiterate idiot ideologue needs to find a permanent residence at the bottom of the La Brea Tar Pits. Her presence there would add to the goo and greatly enhance the air quality everywhere else.

vnvet on April 11, 2014 at 7:37 PM

Ah, Babs Boxcar sez that if we don’t kill Keystone, it will kill the children! That insipid, illiterate idiot ideologue needs to find a permanent residence at the bottom of the La Brea Tar Pits. Her presence there would add to the goo and greatly enhance the air quality everywhere else.

vnvet on April 11, 2014 at 7:37 PM

Don’t worry, we can just go back to getting our oil from whales.

slickwillie2001 on April 11, 2014 at 8:34 PM

diot ideologue needs to find a permanent residence at the bottom of the La Brea Tar Pits.

Do you think we’d get a gallon of gas out of her…or a bucket of warm pee?

Twana on April 11, 2014 at 11:42 PM

Idiot ideologue needs to find a permanent residence at the bottom of the La Brea Tar Pits.

Do you think we’d get a gallon of gas out of her…or a bucket of warm pee?

Twana on April 11, 2014 at 11:43 PM

I expect that the President will approve Keystone XL.

I expect that the greenies will launch suit after suit after suit against its construction on any fantastic grounds that they can think of.

I expect that Obama will allow that to continue, gutless blunder that he is, lacking the courage to instruct his agencies to the contrary.

I expect that Keystone will not be built on Obama’s watch, regardless of his approval for it.

I expect that Obama will whine that it’s not his fault.

ss396 on April 12, 2014 at 12:22 AM

Mary’s now at 36%, this IS her Hail Mary pass!

Kermit on April 12, 2014 at 9:14 AM

”It was because of actions taken by Republicans in Congress that one delay was caused in the process already.”

WTF is Corney talking about?

iurockhead on April 12, 2014 at 11:07 AM