Obama's bad Keystone politics

Jonah Goldberg:
Jeff Goodell has a piece in the current Rolling Stone which, as the web version notes, went to press before Obama announced his latest punt on Keystone. Goodell writes:
At the same time, the president is likely to announce his decision on the northern leg of the Keystone XL, the hugely controversial 1,179-mile-long pipeline that would bring tar-sands oil down from Alberta to Gulf Coast refineries. Although no final decision has been made, two high-level sources in the Obama administration told me recently that the president has all but decided to deny the permit for the pipeline – a dramatic move that would light up Democratic voters and donors while further provoking the wrath of Big Oil. Finally, Obama is positioning the U.S. to play a key role in negotiations on a new global-climate treaty that will begin next year, establishing American leadership on climate issues and giving him one last chance to lead the world to a cooler future before he leaves the Oval Office.
A few points. I suppose it’s defensible to call Keystone “hugely controversial.” But it seems like more than a mere oversight not to note that it is also popular, if not quite hugely popular. Indeed, its popularity is at an all-time high with only about a quarter of Americans opposed. So, sure, denying the pipeline — which would be just one of a great many already zig-zagging across the United States — would provoke the wrath of “Big Oil,” it would also provoke the wrath of, you know, the American people. It would also provoke the wrath of many labor unions, including the Laborers International Union whose head recently responded to Obama’s decision to delay the pipeline....
This delay should be used in this all's campaign against the anti energy left and its hold over the Obama administration.  Voters should be getting fed up with the passive aggressive approach to killing a popular program.


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