Pipeline fever: Democrats rediscover Keystone XL

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a more comically obvious aftershock from a landmark election than doomed Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana suddenly reinventing herself as a passionate supporter of the Keystone XL pipeline, who just can’t understand why the darn thing hasn’t been built already.  “I believe it is time to act,” she said on the Senate floor Wednesday.  “I believe that we should take the new Majority Leader at his word and stop blocking legislation that is broadly supported by the American public and has been for quite some time. I want to say yes to new Majority Leader Mitch McCconnell. The time to start is now. The public has clearly spoken.”

She went on like that for three hours, just in case anyone in Louisiana doubts that she loves that Keystone pipeline all to pieces.  She sleeps with a bag of Canadian tar sand under her pillow every night, to fuel her dreams about completing the project.

Oh, so this is now all Mitch McConnell’s fault, eh?  She wants us to “take him at his word” and hold a vote, as though she’s calling some kind of a bluff from the pachyderms on the other side of the aisle.  What a load of bull, as anyone familiar with the career of Mary Landrieu until this point should know.  The reason Keystone XL has not been built can be explained in two words: Barack Obama.  He’s been twisting administrative processes for six long years to block this much-needed, environmentally sound project, which has always enjoyed strong majority support from the American people.  He does it because the most special snowflakes among the special interests clogging Washington, the environmentalist lobby, demand it.  There’s no logic or reason to Obama’s opposition – it’s pure special-interest politics, national policy set by some of the most powerful lobbyists in D.C.

But the media refuses to call them out as “lobbyists” or “special interests,” and they won’t call Obama’s blockade of Keystone “gridlock,” even though it’s the best example of pure gridlock you’re ever likely to find.  You’ll be getting another dose of it soon, after Senate Democrats conclude this ridiculous sham of claiming to support the project – or, in some cases, muting their opposition and hoping the radical greens don’t notice – because they’re desperate to save Landrieu’s seat.

It’s funny as hell to watch their breathless love of Gaia melt away like morning dew because they don’t want Republicans to pick up another Senate seat – remember, billionaire Tom Steyer bought the Democrat Party, cash on the barrelhead, for the express purpose of stopping this project, and now he gets to watch his surviving bought-and-paid-for stooges forget all about him and wonder out loud why there isn’t oil chugging through that pipe already.  “It would be a tremendous windfall for all of us.  It’s something we can count on.  And I can’t for the life of me understand why we haven’t to date been able to move this piece of legislation forward,” said Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV).  Yeah, that’s a real head-scratcher, Joe.  Why don’t you ask Barack Obama and Harry Reid if they can explain it to you?

But as the Wall Street Journal reminds us, Obama will veto any bill that comes out of the Senate, and he’ll be his usual arrogant self when he does it:

The Keystone XL pipeline, which would deliver Canadian oil sands to the Gulf Coast, has faced delays and has become a political flash point in the nation???s debate over climate change and economic growth. The pipeline owner, TransCanada Corp. of Calgary, Alberta, first submitted its application more than six years ago to the U.S. State Department, which has authority over cross-border oil pipelines.

The Obama administration delayed its review of the project in April until a Nebraska lawsuit is resolved, addressing questions about a state law that allowed the pipeline???s route through the state. A ruling is expected between Thanksgiving and year???s end.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Thursday that the president would veto a Keystone approval bill, saying the president takes a ???dim view??? of legislation overriding the State Department???s review process.

The pipeline would carry as much as 830,000 barrels of oil a day, mostly from Alberta???s oil sands to Gulf Coast refineries. Of the total 1,700 miles, the southern 485 miles have already been built and are transporting oil from Cushing, Okla., to Texas.

In a statement, a TransCanada spokesman praised the move Wednesday to vote on its project, whose costs have roughly doubled to an estimated $10 billion because of the delays. ???There continues to be strong bipartisan support for Keystone XL, and we are encouraged by any effort to move this process forward,??? spokesman Shawn Howard said.

Well, that forward movement is going to come to an abrupt halt at Barack Obama’s desk, as he returns from selling America out in Beijing to block a project the American people strongly support.  The House bill to get this pipeline going is sponsored by Landrieu’s opponent in the Louisiana Senate runoff, current Congressman Bill Cassidy.  She had the mother of all gut checks after Election Day and realized her survival depended on pretending to support Keystone, comfortable in the knowledge that Obama will veto it anyway, because he’s bent on pretending the election didn’t happen.

The Washington Post captures a hilarious scene from yesterday’s theatrics that shows just how toxic the Democrat Party has become, and how eager Landrieu is to distance herself from its leadership:

Before her remarks, Landrieu was spotted riding the escalator alone up from the Senate trains that carry lawmakers between their offices and the Capitol, toward a row of elevators. She was stone-faced and declined to answer questions from reporters. Once she reached the top level and stepped off, Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), one of his party???s top campaign strategists, walked over.

Smiling, he asked Landrieu to step aside for a private conversation. She shook her head and moved briskly toward the elevator. As she did, she pointed to her phone, saying she had a call. Schumer paused for a moment as she moved away. His smile dropped, and he turned to follow her. ???Mary, Mary,??? he said, a few steps behind, asking her to speak with him. When she kept moving and ducked into an elevator, he hustled and jumped in to join her as the doors closed.

A few minutes later, Landrieu took to the Senate floor to vent her frustrations and to try to shift the political winds in her direction.

I’ve said before that Louisiana voters should resent Landrieu for wasting their time with this runoff election, instead of conceding gracefully to the inevitable result.  I take it back.  I trust the good people of Louisiana will agree that this month of political entertainment is well worth another trudge to the polls in December.  It’s quite edifying for the rest of the nation, too.  I believe we can dispense with any further neurotic liberal op-eds about how 2014 wasn’t a “wave” election, and scarcely mattered at all.

We’ll most likely have some congressional action on Keystone next week.  Let me put this bluntly, for the benefit of any Louisiana voters tempted to fall for the Democrats’ posturing: the only way Keystone is getting built, before a Republican takes the White House in 2016, is if the Democrats are terrorized to the depths of their souls, and fall in line with Republicans to knock Obama’s veto pen out of his hand.  The likelihood of such an alignment occurring will be enhanced if you let Mary Landrieu stop pretending she lives in Louisiana, and run off to a happy and remunerative career in Washington as a lobbyist with a thick ex-Senator’s Rolodex.  It might not come down to the drama of a veto override; change the mood in the Senate Democrat cloakroom enough, and Obama just might find a little something-something from the State Department in his in-box that convinces him the “review process” is finally over, and Keystone can move forward.  The chances of that outcome will diminish if you fall for Landrieu’s pipeline theater and send her back to the Senate after a show vote and Obama veto.

Also, like every other incumbent Democrat, Mary Landrieu was the vote that passed ObamaCare.