Let's face it: Big Oil is used to getting its way. But not today... and we have President Obama to thank for standing up to them in spite of the political risk.
President Obama has just rejected a permit for the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline -- a project that promised riches for the oil giants and an environmental disaster for the rest of us.
His decision represents a victory of historic proportions for people from throughout the pipeline path and all across America who have waged an uphill, years-long fight against one of the most nightmarish fossil fuel projects of our time.
But make no mistake: Big Oil is going to fight back hard and fast.
Why? Because this was a prime-time fight. The oil giants made sure of that.
Big Oil had their Congressional boosters put the president to an election-year test by forcing him to decide the pipeline's fate within 60 days. Then, the oil lobby itself rolled out its biggest PR guns to get the job done.
The head of the American Petroleum Institute sent the White House a very public and blatant warning: Approve the Keystone XL or face "huge political consequences."
Because Big Oil lost, this is not the end of the fight. This is the beginning of the real battle for America's energy future.
That battle will be fought in Congress, where Representatives who've collected $12 million from the Oil & Gas industry over the past two years are sure to try to raise Keystone XL from the dead.
So when you hear Big Oil call Keystone XL a national jobs plan -- ask "Are you kidding me?" A single pipeline project is not a jobs plan. Economic security is to be found in clean energy not in dirty energy that threatens us with oil spills and ever worsening harm from climate change.
And when you hear Big Oil say that we need Keystone XL for our security -- tell them to get real. Energy security comes from reducing our dependence on oil, not from a pipeline that would leave us with the risk but send the tar sands oil overseas.
The president stood up to Big Oil and listened to Americans saying: "We're done with fossil fuel schemes that destroy our land, poison our water and wreak havoc with our climate so that oil companies can make out like bandits." Now we need to continue to stand with the president and make it clear that tar sands pipelines are not in our national interest.