After five years of delays, the voices in support of the Keystone pipeline, an important part of an all-of-the-above energy strategy, are growing louder. The Washington Post editorial board today expressed, “It’s past time for President Obama to set aside politics” and act on the Keystone XL pipeline. The post criticized environmentalists’ opposition to the jobs project, as their claims have been debunked time and again by government analysis. The editorial stated, “The real downside to rejecting the project concerns jobs (construction would create at least several thousand), relations with Canada and the message that arbitrary decision-making would send to investors and other nations.”
In addition to the Washington Post, MSNBC anchor Ed Shultz voiced support for the jobs and energy project, recently declaring, “I think the president should give this project the stamp of approval.” He later told his audience “we’re not really confronting reality here” and referenced the State Department’s latest findings that confirmed the project would be better for safety and the environment.
Previous members of the president’s cabinet are also weighing in on Keystone. Former Interior Secretary Ken Salzar yesterday called the project a “win-win,” saying that it would benefit U.S. energy security, and former Energy Secretary Steven Chu, a Nobel Prize winner in physics, said Obama’s decision on the pipeline would be a “political one and not a scientific one.”
Scientific evidence, public support, and common sense should dictate that the president would end the delays and approve Keystone XL. But after over five years of review, there is still no guarantee a decision will come soon or the project will get built. The fate of Keystone XL, along with tens of thousands of American jobs, now rests solely with the president since the Senate has refused to take up House-passed legislation.
In his State of the Union Address, President Obama acknowledged that “one of the biggest factors in bringing more jobs back is our commitment to American energy.” The Keystone XL pipeline is a project that will advance both American energy security and job creation, without threatening safety or the environment. After 1966 days, it’s time for the president to stop making excuses and finally say “yes” to Keystone’s jobs and affordable energy.