"It's hard to defend," said MSNBC's Mika Brzezinski
of the Administration's latest Keystone Pipeline delay.
Last Friday was another blatant political news dump by the Obama White House. It was bad policy, bad for jobs, bad for American competitiveness and energy development.
It was good for one Democratic billionaire mega donor, Tom Steyer. You may remember him as the benefactor to whom Harry Reid rented the Senate floor
Tom Rogan at National Review
"The White House has spent years sending Keystone XL through the paperwork wringer. Still, the motivation for this latest deferral is obvious. It’s a midterm-election payoff, intended specifically for Tom Steyer, a retired hedge-fund manager who has pledged to raise $100 million for anti-Keystone candidates. In short, facing the prospect of a Republican Senate, Obama has decided that governance can wait until November."
A Wall Street Journal
editorial picks up on that theme, noting,
"The real reason for the delay is Democratic politics. ...The hedge-fund politico has pledged to raise $100 million to help Democrats keep the Senate, and on Friday he received a major return on his investment when the State Department again delayed its decision on the Keystone XL pipeline. Mr. Steyer and the party's liberal financiers are climate-change absolutists who have made killing Keystone a non-negotiable demand. But the White House doesn't want to reject the pipeline before November because several Senate Democrats running for re-election claim to favor it. We say 'claim' because Louisiana's Mary Landrieu and others can't even get Majority Leader Harry Reid to give them a vote on the floor."
The WSJ's point about Mary Landrieu and vulnerable red state Democrats is an important one to note. Landrieu has been telling anyone who will listen how influential she is as the new Chairman of the Energy Committee. It turns out that Landrieu isn't influential at all. Though she does seem quite talented at writing strongly worded letters for Harry Reid and Barack Obama proceed to ignore.
Landrieu isn't alone. The Keystone delay reinforces how ineffective Senators like Mark Begich, Mark Udall, Mark Pryor, Mark Warner and Kay Hagan are.
Just a week before the President's announcement, these Senators "urged" President Obama to approve Keystone. A plea which he blatantly and publicly ignored.
It's clear that Harry Reid and Democrats tasked with holding the Senate have made the political calculation that Tom Steyer's $100 million is necessary this fall.
However, the cost of that $100 million is steep, and could result in the loss of a vulnerable Democrats like Mary Landrieu.
Think of it this way: In a state like Louisiana, six of ten voters oppose President Obama. Why would any of them vote for Mary Landrieu, who on average supports President Obama 97% of the time? It's clear she is powerless to do anything on the rare occasion where she claims to disagree with White House policy.
Americans have had enough of the liberal Obama/Reid. Sign the petition and help us put a stop to it this November.