President Joe Biden’s day-one decision to cancel the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline has proved to be quite unpopular, and now a second Democratic senator in as many weeks has shared his disapproval with the decision.
Others will suffer in states across the country where the pipeline was being counted on for jobs. The communities that would have served those workers will also hurt. The complete scope of the trickle-down misery has yet to be determined.
But vulnerable red-state Democrats are joining the call for Biden to retract his executive order.
Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia joined the chorus of those in opposition to the permit cancellation on Monday. The senator is now perhaps the most powerful man in Congress, as his vote is going to be counted on as Democrats need him, every Senate Democrat, independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, and Vice President Kamala Harris as the 51st and tie-breaking vote on legislation.
That’s assuming no Republicans get the itch to help Democrats advance their radical agenda.
This week, Manchin threw some weight around. First, he issued a news release on Monday affirming his support for the oil and gas industry. Then, on Tuesday, he sent Biden a letter calling for the restoration of the Keystone XL pipeline.
CBS News reporter Cara Korte posted a copy of the letter on Twitter.
“I encourage you to let these processes proceed as intended and to not let politics drive the decisions on the development and operation of our nation’s vital energy infrastructure.” pic.twitter.com/XgbyfojWod
— Cara Korte (@CaraKorte) February 9, 2021
In the letter, Manchin, who is the chairman of the Senate’s Energy and Natural Resources Committee, argued that pipelines, such as the one Biden canceled, are the “safest mode to transport our oil and natural gas resources and they support thousands of high-paying, American union jobs.”
“I encourage you to reconsider your decision to revoke the cross-border permit for the Keystone XL pipeline and take into account the potential impacts of any further action to safety, jobs, and energy security,” he added.
“Pipeline infrastructure projects already undergo a rigorous permitting process that allows experts to weigh-in on the security, safety, and environmental impacts of the project,” Manchin concluded. “I encourage you to let these processes proceed as intended and to not let politics drive the decisions on the development and operation of our nation’s vital energy infrastructure.”
Manchin joins Democratic Sen. Jon Tester of Montana as the second Democrat in two weeks to oppose the permit’s cancelation.
Tester, who was narrowly re-elected to the Senate for another term in 2018, told CNN last week he was disappointed to see the disastrous effects of Biden’s fiat to cancel thousands of jobs.
“I’ve been a supporter of the Keystone Pipeline,” Tester told CNN host Poppy 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.”
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
Like any liberal hoping to walk the party line, Tester added, “I believe in climate change.”
“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,” he added.
The president’s leftward lurch since being inaugurated apparently hasn’t endeared him to the voters of his party’s red-state senators. Both men are apparently feeling the heat just three weeks into Biden’s executive-order presidency.
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