Republican lawmakers seem convinced that President Obama's handling of the Keystone project will fragment the support of his industry, union, and environmental backers and deal him a blow in an election year.
Both sides are hyping the presidential decision as pivotal, with Bill McKibben hailing it as "a brave decision" and Jack Gerard characterizing it as "a clear abdication of presidential leadership." Let's try to deconstruct the hype to assess what the decision really means.
Is it radical to care for our country, our world, our children and grandchildren, our future? It seems more radical for a government to come out swinging in favour of an industrial project in advance of public hearings into that project.
Will Rogers advised politicians to "never overlook a good opportunity to shut up." Congress should adopt his advice as it considers fast-tracking the Keystone XL pipeline: keep quiet and let the permit review proceed at its own pace.
As Keystone XL protesters savor their victory to postpone the pipeline project, another oil policy decision this week did not turn out so well; a plan to expand drilling operations in the oil-damaged Gulf and pristine arctic.
It's time we stood up, all of us, to say we won't put the American heartland at risk for a project that would wed our future to the past. We won't keep pushing to the ends of the Earth to feed our addiction to oil.