Robert Knight

Checking his sundial and solar-powered calendar, Barack Obama has decided that he did not have enough time to study the impact of the $7 billion XL pipeline from Canada, so he killed it.

Seriously. That was the excuse for halting a project that could have created 20,000 jobs, brought 830,000 barrels of oil a day to Texas refineries, and helped free America from the Middle East’s stranglehold on our energy supply.

This, from the man who had to hurry, hurry, hurry and jam the 2,700-page ObamaCare bill down America’s throat so that, as then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, “you can, uh, find out what is in it.” He’s also the same guy who, in March, went to Brazil, cup in hand, asking them to hurry up and develop their offshore oil so we can buy some of it.

The State Department said this about the XL pipeline, which has been on the drawing board for three years: The decision was “predicated on the fact that the Department does not have sufficient time to obtain the information necessary to assess whether the project, in its current state, is in the national interest.”

Heck no. We all want gasoline to hit $8 a gallon before we do something constructive. We’re always being told we don’t pay as much per gallon as the Europeans do, and that this should somehow bother us. Well, perhaps it does bother some people (not I), but not enough for them to go out and buy a fire-catching Chevy Volt for forty grand from Government Motors.

Mr. Obama naturally blamed Republicans in the House, who, having learned that Obama planned to put off a decision on the XL until 2013 – after the election – tucked a 60-day deadline into a bill.

It’s clear that killing the pipeline isn’t remotely in the interests of the United States of America, nor Canada’s. But the question is, who benefits?

Could it be the Red Chinese, who are itching to see the Canadians re-route the pipeline to the West Coast for massive shipments to China’s oil-hungry economy?

Apprised of Obama’s threat in December to put a wet sock in the whole thing, Prime Minister Stephen Harper warned, “I am very serious about selling our oil off this continent, selling our energy products off to Asia. I think we have to do that.” Mr. Harper has reason to hurry, too, given that Brazil has signed contracts with China for some of the 4.9 million barrels a day that Brazil expects to pump by 2020.

Robert Knight

Robert Knight is an author, senior fellow for the American Civil Rights Union and a frequent contributor to Townhall.