It has been a week since President Obama made his shocking announcement delaying the Keystone XL pipeline decision until after the presidential election. The news has been met with cries of victory and sighs of disappointment, but the tactic shouldn’t have surprised anyone as it fits in totally with his ideology.
Additionally, TransCanada, the company behind the pipeline, handed the environmentalists a win.
First, we all know that the President is fundamentally opposed to all carbon-based fuels (think Solyndra, et al)—so the pipeline’s approval was a longshot. But it would have created thousands of true shovel-ready jobs without a dollar of taxpayer money. Many of those jobs would have been union jobs.
The pipeline’s approval would have made the unions happy. while angering the environmentalists. Two of his solid funders were in conflict—one shouting in one ear, the other in the other ear. Waiting for the decision, watchers wondered which base held more sway.
The delay announcement, however, is a fundraising coup.
In August, when the Environmental Impact Statement on the pipeline “reaffirmed the environmental integrity of the project,” environmental groups threatened to pull their support for President Obama in the upcoming election if he approved the project—some calling his environmental record disappointing and dismal. Because they have no place else to go, Obama expects them to stick with him.