A red-state Democrat has come out against President Joe Biden’s decision to kill the Keystone XL pipeline and the thousands of jobs that accompanied its construction.
“I’ve been a supporter of the Keystone Pipeline,” Tester told Harlow. “And there’s been two caveats, and they have been basic caveats. You do it to the safest standards, and you respect private property rights. I think the Keystone Pipeline folks could have done a better job getting the Fort Peck Tribe on board, and they need to continue working to do that, but in the end, I think it’s a good project.”
“I believe in climate change,” Tester declared, like an obedient Democrat. “But I also think that this one pipeline isn’t going to turn it around, isn’t going to turn our climate around, and it’s not going to make it in markedly worse situations. But so in the end, yeah, I supported the Keystone Pipeline …
“I will tell you, in my real life, I’m a farmer, and we’re not where we need to be in this country for replacing diesel fuel with something else in a tractor, for example, or in a semi that’s going down the road,” Tester said. “We will get there, but it’s going to take some good policies from Washington, D.C. And it’s going to take some money invested in R&D.”
Democratic Sen. Jon Tester on the Keystone XL pipeline: “I believe in climate change, but I also think that this one pipeline isn’t going to turn our climate around.” pic.twitter.com/xGi14QKm0h
— The Hill (@thehill) February 2, 2021
You have to agree with the senator, even if he did try to portray himself as a humble “farmer.”
How would safely transporting crude oil end the left’s boogieman of climate change? Pipelines are the safest way to transport oil. Tester will have to have that conversation with his Democratic colleagues and with Biden — and, hopefully, the people of Montana.
Being a red-state Democrat must be challenging. You can’t be a Democrat without buying into at least some of the flawed logic, hedonistic ideas and the “science” the party’s leaders claim they embrace. But these people still have to pretend to be normal enough to get elected.
How did this guy get elected in Montana?
Tester, who has represented Montana in the Senate since winning his first race in 2006, barely won re-election during the 2018 midterms. He defeated Republican Matt Rosendale by a margin of fewer than 18,000 votes.
Presumably, a lot more people in Big Sky country are awake after the 2020 election (Trump won the state by 16 points) and the things going on in D.C. Biden hurt Montana with his Inauguration Day executive order killing the project’s permit.
Tester knows he’s going struggle to get re-elected unless that pipeline gets back online by yesterday. That’s why he found himself doing damage control on CNN Tuesday — playing the game.
Tester, the third-term “farmer,” said what he thought his constituents wanted to hear.
But the game has changed, and it will in all likelihood continue to favor whomever Tester faces in 2024, now that Democrats are getting a turn to make a mess of things in Washington and in Montana.
Montana’s other senator, Republican Steve Daines, has already introduced a bill that would give the Keystone Pipeline permission for construction without approval from the White House, according to The Hill.
In Montana, Republicans outnumber Democrats statewide by a 49 percent to 30 percent margin with independents making up the other 21 percent, according to the Pew Research Center.
It’s time for the state’s voters to start knocking on doors for 2024, and to send Tester away from Washington and back to the farm.
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