Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Obama: Keystone pipeline bill 'has earned my veto' --Thanks Obama

quote [ WASHINGTON ? President Obama vetoed a bill Tuesday that would have approved the Keystone XL pipeline, making good on a threat to reject a proposal embraced by Republicans as a jobs measure but opposed by environmentalists as contributing to climate change. ]

Well he did something I agree with. have seen a few other items from more biased sources saying congress is short 4 votes to overturn the veto too!

ASHINGTON ? President Obama vetoed a bill Tuesday that would have approved the Keystone XL pipeline, making good on a threat to reject a proposal embraced by Republicans as a jobs measure but opposed by environmentalists as contributing to climate change.

"The presidential power to veto legislation is one I take seriously," Obama said in his veto message. "But I also take seriously my responsibility to the American people. And because this act of Congress conflicts with established executive branch procedures and cuts short thorough consideration of issues that could bear on our national interest ? including our security, safety, and environment ? it has earned my veto."

It was only the third veto of his presidency, but likely to be the first in a series of vetoes as he parries a Republican-controlled Congress in the last two years of his presidency. The White House has already issued 13 formal veto threats so far this year ? the most ever at this point in a new Congress since President Reagan first started issuing written veto threats in 1985.

Obama vetoed the Keystone bill shortly after it arrived at the White House from the Senate, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had held up its transmittal so that Congress could be in session when it went to the president.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the president vetoed the bill almost as soon as it arrived at the White House, "without any drama or fanfare or delay."

An override of the Keystone veto is unlikely. The bill passed the House 270-152 and the Senate 62-36, margins well short of the two-thirds majorities needed to override. McConnell said a veto override vote will be scheduled by March 3.


Obama uses veto pen sparingly, but could that change?

The 1,179-mile pipeline would connect tar sands cruse oil in Alberta Canada with an existing pipeline in Nebraska, allowing energy company TransCanada to pump 830,000 barrels a day to refineries in the Midwest and the Gulf Coast.

Obama's veto doesn't mean the end of the Keystone debate. Obama could still approve the project on his own authority, although he has suggested that its environmental impacts would outweigh any economic benefits.

In the meantime, the State Department continues to review the proposal to determine whether it's in the national interest. TransCanada first applied for permits to build the pipeline in 2008, and there's no indication of when the review will be finished. "It's an ongoing process that doesn't have a deadline," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said this month.

TransCanada said in a statement it remains committed to the project and is working with the State Department to resolve environmental concerns.


Fact check: Competing Keystone claims

Also, congressional Republicans have said they could attach a Keystone provision to future bills, in an effort to reach some kind of compromise that could either earn the president's signature or get enough votes to override his veto.

"The allure of appeasing environmental extremists may be too powerful for the president to ignore," wrote McConnell and House Speaker John Boehner in an op-ed in USA TODAY. "But the president is sadly mistaken if he thinks vetoing this bill will end this fight. Far from it. We are just getting started."
[SFW] [politics] [+10 Good]
[by ithaqua10@9:37pmGMT]


moriati said @ 9:52pm GMT on 24th Feb
Yes. We (finally) can?
HP Lovekraftwerk said @ 9:58pm GMT on 24th Feb
Falling oil prices just bum Republicans out. They went nuts on Obama trying to declare ANWR in Alaska off-limits, even though the USGS reports have noted there's likely not even close to previous estimates of oil/gas under the land that people like Sarah Palin touted.

I also hate it when anyone tries to tie oil production/refining to the U.S. being energy independent. We've been exporting gasoline for years. Unless Congress is willing to write laws that all oil produced/refined within the U.S. stays in the U.S., that pesky world oil market will determine prices.
lilmookieesquire said @ 9:59pm GMT on 24th Feb
"appeasing environmental extremists"

Classic Boehner.
steele said @ 10:18pm GMT on 24th Feb
Hooray for campaigning Obama.
mechavolt said @ 1:11am GMT on 25th Feb
I consider myself a progressive. I think we should take care of the environment as best we can. But I'm not dead-set against the Keystone XL pipeline. Here's why:

1) The Keystone pipeline already exists. Oil will be transported through the US regardless of whether the XL pipeline is built.

2) Tar sands from Canada are already being fracked. Oil will be transported from Canada regardless of whether the XL pipeline is built.

3) There is a risk of an oil spill with pipelines. But there is a greater risk of an oil spill transporting oil by train.

4) Democrats have spent a ton of time fighting the XL pipeline - time that could have instead been spent implementing regulations to ensure safer transport of oil.

5) The pipeline is going to be built eventually. No matter how much Democrats fight it. There's only so much political capital to go around, and we're spending a bunch of it fighting the inevitable. Use that veto for crap immigration, gun, homosexuality, abortion, campaign finance, etc. laws the Republicans are sure to send to your desk in the next two years.
sanepride said @ 2:30am GMT on 25th Feb [Score:2]
Your points are mostly very reasonable, though I would take exception to the notion that Democrats time fighting XL could have been better spent elsewhere. Let's keep in mind that it's the GOP who have spent an inordinate amount of time and energy fighting for a pipeline that serves no real US energy interest, furthers environmental degradation and climate change, and oil companies aren't even that interested in. If the thing were approved and built it would probably change little from a practical matter, but it would represent a capitulation to forces that at this point are promoting unbridled fossil fuel consumption for no practical purpose- just because it's there. I'd argue that fighting pointlessness is not at all pointless.
rhesusmonkey said @ 7:07am GMT on 27th Feb
There was a time I was more concerned with KXL because I was invested in TransCanada, but that was several years ago. I do however believe the statement, or assumption, that "lack of a pipeline will slow development of Tar Sands", or conversely as you put it "a pipeline that ... Furthers environmental degradation and climate change" to be incredibly naive of the situation . The oil will flow as long as it is economically feasible to do so. Is it more expensive to haul via rail than pipe? Probably, but not as much as youwould think, and there will be more pressure to close that gap which will result in lowered safety and higher risk on the part of the rail companies. Warren Buffet is fighting KXL all the way to the bank.

The collapsing oil prices though, those might have more impact on tar sands production, and likely a worse legacy since the companies will use all spare earnings to pump more out, and when they eventually go bankrupt the tailing ponds etc that they were supposed to fund the cleanup of will suddenly become "not my problem". Going to suck to be an Alberta taxpayer.
sanepride said @ 3:11pm GMT on 27th Feb
I don't doubt that the oil will flow whether the pipeline is built or not. The rejection of the pipeline works as a statement of principle.
mechanical contrivance said @ 3:46pm GMT on 27th Feb
Principles don't affect things. Only money does.
mechavolt said @ 1:15am GMT on 25th Feb
Furthermore, I'm not impressed with this new post-election Obama. He's talking a better talk, but that's because he doesn't have to worry about any of what he says actually being taken seriously. He can talk about inequality all day long now because Congress will never let anything change for the better. Granted, this has been my complaint about him for the past 4 years, so take a grain of salt.

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