White House likely to announce opposition to Keystone pipeline project
January 18th, 2012
12:19 PM ET

White House likely to announce opposition to Keystone pipeline project

Washington (CNN) – The Obama administration will likely announce its opposition to the controversial Keystone pipeline project as early as today, according to a Democratic source briefed on the matter.

Though House Speaker John Boehner's office has not yet been informed of the White House decision, the Speaker said today, "This is not good for our country. The president wants to put this off until it's convenient for him to make a decision. That means after the next election. The fact is the American people are asking the question right now, "Where are the jobs?"

The proposed Keystone pipeline has been caught up in the Washington political discourse since Republicans inserted a clause in the payroll tax cut negotiations last fall trying to force a decision on the project within a limited time frame. The White House had tried to push the decision until 2013 after the coming presidential election.

The pipeline would run from northern Alberta in Canada down to Texas's Gulf Coast. Republicans and some unions want to push approval through for the project in favor of the job creation prospects. The administration points to environmental reviews still underway and opponents express concerns about the nation's oil dependency being further embraced in regards to not rushing a decision.

soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Mike

    Wait so he knows of a jobs ready project and wants to push it off. He just wants to kiss the ass of all the tree huggers instead of putting Americans to work. What a weak kneed president.

    January 18, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • Iamnotfooled

      He put out the American Jobs Act in September that would create 1.9 million jobs. The Republicans killed it. Who is weak kneed? If there is any ass kissing going on its the Repubs kissing big oil behinds and getting paid nicely. Remember it is Canada's oil. They can raise prices or not even sell it to us once it is built. But the environmental impacts will be our water , land, and air.

      January 18, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
      • freedog

        Just like all the millions of shovel ready jobs he promised. Unlike Dumbocrats, we think for a living and are not about to allow the President to squander any more of our treasure. As for green energy, knock yourself out but I'm not wealthy enough, I prefer the fossil fuel variety.

        January 19, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
      • jean2009

        I am living in an area with 5 new school and repairs to 4 major highways due to stimulus funding of shovel ready projects.

        January 19, 2012 at 8:24 pm |
    • izy

      i agree with lamnotfooted, if repubs get their way, they are just doing this cause they have alot of money to be gained, these oil companies had paid them off, its simple, there is to many corrupted officials involved in this...not caring of the enviroment, of the people who live in these areas, many of the companies repubs support outsource, its on paper, and the facts are facts. im with obama on this one, dont go through with this. it will have bad repurcussions.

      January 18, 2012 at 5:13 pm |
    • max

      I still want the pipeline routed around the aquifer.

      Congress tried to push and obama pushed back. Good for him. He outsmarted Boehner.

      As for all the anti-this and anti-that – you really think either party has clean hands and the perfect solution? Naive.

      January 18, 2012 at 5:55 pm |
      • jean2009

        I don't want the pipeline period.

        Why should a bunch of American investors be allowed to pipe Canadian tar-shale oil to the tax-free international zone refineries on the gulf? Just so they don't have to pay U. S. taxes, and from there they can sell it to the highest bidder.... CHINA.

        This is a win-win for the Koch brothers....no U.S. taxes, no needing to sell that product in the United States... at the price our Midwest refineries are willing to pay, no worry about paying for the damage to our environment....and we wind up paying them $3.9 billion more each year for the oil they do sell here.


        January 19, 2012 at 8:37 pm |
    • Trace

      For you Mike, and all the other brainless insults to the President....THIS DEAL WAS A SHAME FROM THE GET GO. The GOP/Tea Pottys, went long in the market for this deal, especially John Boehner. He stood to make some serious money if this deal got approved. Because the president is saying more time is needed to review the impacts, Boehner and the other BIG OIL Lackies look pretty bad in front of their masters....Plus on top of it all, these fools are losing money in the market. That's why the GOP is really pissed at Obama this time. But they still have geniuses like you carrying their water from them with your vapid Faux news, uninformed rants. You are doing a fine job without a single fact or knowing your behind from your overcoat. ITS ABOUT $$'s and it doesn't make sense for the American People. Now go buy a clue

      January 19, 2012 at 9:24 am |
      • JAnGA

        "uninformed rants" Is that not what you just provided Trace. Did you even bother to read the State Department' report of the final enironmental impact study. Since you propbably didn't – here's the short of it. The pipeline would not be an environmental disaster except to all the environmental lobbiests and the tree-huggers. So what is the president's decision – politics. The president doesn't want to make a decision that might lose him some votes in the election. If he can't delay the decision so he ljust decided he wasn't going to lose votes. The project would have produced over 100K jobs, created business along the pipeline and it would have been a major foreign policy coup, but because it was against his far left voter opinion, he rejected it. You said its all about $$ and doesn't make sense for America. Why doesn't making jobs and cutting off Middle East power over America not make sense?

        January 19, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
      • Howard

        For rational people, like you Mike ... and, for all the stooges, like trace ... who continually, and blindly defend obama, no matter how badly he screws up ... although the clique of obama stooges, usually found here on the CNN blogs, blindly defend and excuse their inept master ... even though he's destroying America before their very eyes ... more and more Americans are waking up to the fact that obama is the worst thing that has ever happened to America ... and, that if we don't stop him now ... our once exceptional country will be damaged beyond repair. Save America ... dump obama now !!!

        January 19, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
      • jean2009

        The only reason Keystone XL wants to ship Canadian shale tar-sands oil to the gulf is that is where the international trade tax-free zone refineries are located. This is so they can bypass paying U. S. taxes, and sell their product on the international market to the highest bidder. This is another Koch Brothers scheme to screw America.

        January 19, 2012 at 8:21 pm |
  2. John

    Isn't this old news? Two years of studies and we are talking about "not rushing a decision"? You would think a country with over 400,000 miles of pipeline would already know the pro's and con's...

    January 18, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • DC2003

      Seems to exactly be the point ... we already know the "pros & cons" of building such a massive pipeline.
      Add to that the proposed route has been changed more than once ... each time it changes an environmental study of the impacted areas has to be done.

      January 18, 2012 at 2:23 pm |
  3. hotdawg

    dumb-da-dumb-dumb-duuuuuumb! Jobs, increased North American reliance, decreased overseas reliance, on and on. don't you know that in this day and age the line will and can be built environmentally sound? Green energy on a large scale is someways off, so....dumb!!!!!!!

    January 18, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • max

      can you drink oil?

      January 18, 2012 at 6:02 pm |
      • freedog

        can you drink solar power...at night?

        January 18, 2012 at 6:28 pm |
    • jean2009

      With the oil being sold to China as the highest bidder...all the while Canada circumventing paying U.S. tax. It is very likely we will have neither the Canadian oil, or our own drinkable water. If we do have the Canadian oil (currently we buy 97% of their oil) we will be bidding against the rest of the world, for that oil, once it is piped to the international trade tax-free zone at the Valero Refinery in Port Arthur, Texas.

      January 19, 2012 at 9:37 pm |
  4. hotdawg

    I mean, how is this even debatable? In finance, rational decision makers are assumed...how about politics? Dumb!

    January 18, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
  5. Andrew

    As one of my professors put it 30 years ago: The environmentalists don't want nuclear because of the waste, burning coal produces pollution (as does oil & natural gas), damming the rivers is bad – so what do we do – put a bunch of hyperactive gophers on treadmills?"

    If Eisenhower wanted to build the interstate system today, I doubt it would ever get past the House. What is the real risk here? We pump 45 MILLION barrels a day through pipelines and although there have been some spills, they are very small and much less impactful than tankers.

    January 18, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
    • izy

      really small? so what happened in alaska is small? and what happened in the gulf small? many business, and lives affected, even our food. gas prices affected...sorry its to much of a risk in to many levels to have this pipe line, you probably dont mind cause you probably are well off and could afford 9 dollars per gallon if something happens, the rest cant afford that type of disaster.

      January 18, 2012 at 5:43 pm |
      • Its just me!

        Gulf completely different.... 9 dollars of gas is what we will be paying anyway say for example China gets the deal the ship from Canada and their tanker goes down in the Pacific. Guess what disaster again... but on land can be controlled so much easier. Jobs would expand larger and longer than most think.

        January 18, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
    • jean2009

      The only problem Canada has with the existing pipelines is they all currently end in the U S Midwest with one buyer the U.S. If they can get their product to international free zone refineries located on the gulf, they can sell it for a better price untaxed on the world market. Which means our oil prices will go up by about $3.9 billion a year. We currently buy 97% of Canada's oil that is piped to refineries in the Midwest.

      If they can get it to Port Arthur, Texas they can refine and sell it to the highest International bidder U.S. tax free.

      Google- "Keystone XL Will Raise U. S. Oil Prices By Moving More Oil Out of the U. S." by Susie Madrak -December 20, 2011

      January 19, 2012 at 9:57 pm |
  6. Jilli


    The republicans were clearly told by the state department that the pipeline study was not complete – that it required at least 1 year. The republicans had a tantrum and required a decision in 2 months as part of the tax legislation. They're just using this as another political game. When the study is complete, the decision will be made – just it was stated before the gop ultimatum.

    Better to be safe than sorry.

    January 18, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
    • Tracy

      excuses excuses...go hug a tree, AMERICANS need to work for a living...not sit around waiting on a hand out, the economy is in the tank, let us put 20,000 people to work (some BACK to work), politicians putting off decisions so they will be elected, so predictable

      January 18, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
      • FLIndependent

        If the Repubs are really so concerned about jobs they could have passed the President's job plan which would have created many jobs to repair/build infrastructure. They are not concerned about jobs because they want the jobless rate to remain high until election...they only want this pipeline because it lines their pockets. This will not have any impact on our gas prices as the oil will be sold on the open market as it is now. President Obama is making a good decision in waiting on the studies and I'm sure if when they are completed he feels this is good for us he will approve it.

        January 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
      • izy

        the repubs are not willing to assist people to work, the type of jobs you want the rest to take are being your slaves, sorry but every legislature that was brought to their table they refused to cooperate and help americans. the unemployment rate is not cause of obama, but cause of bush and his iraq war, destroying our resources in useless fighting, hug a tree...laughable comment...manipulated by scumbags hiding behind bibles, and money.

        January 18, 2012 at 5:46 pm |
      • mrt00

        Tracy, are you going to become a temp construction worker to participate in the pipeline building? Or are you concerned with other people's "lost jobs"?

        January 18, 2012 at 6:04 pm |
  7. NOvember2012

    sacrafice 20,000 jobs for one...the typical leftist radical way of doing things.

    January 18, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
    • Quaggy99

      The 20,000 jobs is just Keystone Coo-Aid. This number has been proven wrong. It's more like 5,000 temp jobs. And the temp jobs will be a mix of US and Canadian citizens.

      January 18, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • NOvember 2012

      ok 5,000 then and how many will those 5k bring? And there are many other benefits after the pipeline is built....this is obama politics...and it will cost him dearly in the end.

      January 18, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
      • Iamnotfooled

        1.9 million jobs in infrastructure(American Jobs Act) and America will have better roads, bridges, water systems, sewers, airports, electric grids, schools, etc. All without screwing up the aquifers, land and air. How's that?

        January 18, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
      • NOvember 2012

        before you brag about the obama job plan...check out the spending he has already done for shovel ready jobs....it was just a union payback plan and a waste of billions.....and he is trying again to sell his snake oil? Some of you are dumb enough to believe in this guy...unbelievable!

        January 18, 2012 at 9:11 pm |
      • jean2009

        How much Koch brothers tea have you drank?

        Keystone is a way to get Canadian oil out of the U.S. tax-free so it can be sold to the highest bidder, and it will increase the cost American's pay for oil by as much as $3.9 billion a year.

        Canada has pipelines that go to refineries in the Midwest, but there they have to pay U.S. taxes and sell the product to the U. S. If they can bypass the refineries in the Midwest, and get their oil to the international trade tax-free zone refineries located on the gulf, they can then sell their refined crude to the highest bidder, at a bigger profit and pay no U. S. taxes....never mind the little detail that we would buy their oil bidding against China and South American countries ....this just means our energy price for oil will go up.


        Currently, Canada sells 97% of their oil to us....their plan is to bypass us and sell it free of U.S. tax to the international highest bidder.

        Thank you so much for your lack of concern for Americans....are you Canadian or a Koch brothers relative?
        Obama-Biden 2012

        January 19, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
  8. freedog

    The FOODSTAMP PRESIDENT has now guaranteed more people on foodstamps. This was such a no brainer economically but his eco-nazi base threatened to pull campaign funds so Obama elected to screw 100,000 jobs for people in exchange for a chance at re-election. I guarantee you this..if that pipeline had run through Nevada, Colorado, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida...it would have been approved.

    OBAMA chose politics over jobs..once again.

    January 18, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • FLIndependent

      You Faux News watchers are really something and are only dissing the President on this because of your hatred. If you are truly so concerned about jobs then why weren't you upset when the Repubs wouldn't even allow a vote on the President's jobs plan which would have created many jobs by repairing/building infrastructure which is badly needed. This is all another power grab by the Repubs and their oil company cronies.

      January 18, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  9. freedog

    Obama chooses politics over jobs..once again. The foodstamp president has just guaranteed more people on foodstamps. Obama's legacy...The Foodstamp President...That one is going to stick!

    January 18, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
  10. Joe

    America cannot run without oil. If Americans would prefer to purchase their oil from 'terrorist' or 'rogue' nations go ahead.

    There will be a pipeline built from Alberta to the west coast that will have a hard time filling all the oil tankers bound for China fast enough. Maybe you can get your tankers in the lineup and purchase oil there and then ship it down to the California coast to offload there.......

    January 18, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
  11. Jane Wynegar

    I agree with the White House's opposition to the Keystone pipeline project.

    January 18, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
  12. Andy

    The Ogallala aquifer supplies about 80 percent of Nebraska's water for drinking and irrigation. The water is also used by other states and irrigates 26% of US crops. The proposed primary route goes right over this aquifer. If the pipeline leaks are you willing to risk 26% of US crops when an alternative route on the eastern side of Nebraska is available? Obama has stated he would approve the alternate route and TransCanada is evaluating the costs. It’s not election year politics, its smart governing.

    January 18, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
    • FLIndependent

      Totally agree – President Obama is looking out for our best interest and most likely will end up approving it once the studies are done. All the haters on here are willfully ignoring the fact that the Nebraska governor who is a Republican didn't want the pipeline in that area.

      January 18, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • NOvember 2012

      95% of the water used is for irrigation. In many places the water is not suitable for drinking (EPA). The debt to the water varies...and in some areas more sensitive to spills than others...all of this taken into consideration. Obama IS playing politics with this one...he just can't lose any of those left wing votes, he is in trouble.

      January 18, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  13. Ryan

    Another Obama Mistake, Im not a Republican, but this guy has got to go!!!

    January 18, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • NOvember 2012

      he will and he knows it...it was go for broke from the beginning...a radical reformer and leftist to the eyeballs. America is NOT far left wing...obama needs to go back to africa or indonesia for his narcissistic gradifications.

      January 18, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
      • jean2009

        For starters you need to get an education
        That is if you know how....possibly it is beyond your capacity.

        Look up Port Arthur, Texas – Valero Oil refinery located in the International Tax-Free Trade Zone.
        "Tar Sands Pipeline to Serve Exports, Not U. S. Demands"
        This is just a way to screw the American tax payer and make us pay a higher price for oil.


        January 19, 2012 at 9:24 pm |
  14. HD/ride

    You people make me sick, you know the republicans don't give a rats butt about us but you will side with them at any cost, the pipeline is a big joke. how should you give away your health for 5,000 say so jobs, when THEY had a chance to put millions of people to work, do me a favor drive around and look at your infrastructural surrounding and honestly say we don't need this. WAKE UP YOU DUMB-MASS SHEEP. Then you retards always say we looking out for our kids and the future. if he is playing politics good for US.

    January 19, 2012 at 9:16 am |
  15. Trace

    Obama has decided to turn the tables on the dishonest insider trading GOP/Tea Potty's. Boehner and crew went long in the market for this deal, and really stood to make some serious money if the deal got approved. They were hoping the continued clueless folks who spin the Faux news lies, would continue in the normal pattern of stupidity. That way they get paid, the president get's the insults. But the GOP is really getting pissed at Obama because their not making any money at the moment....BOO HOO...BOO HOO Its about $$'s only and doesn't make sense for America. What happened to the JOB's BILL?

    January 19, 2012 at 9:33 am |
  16. Karen J

    Obama has backbone to stand against Republican oil backers. Another one for the people. GO 'O'.

    January 19, 2012 at 12:41 pm |
  17. Guest

    And now oil goes to China

    January 19, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
  18. freedog

    The oil is flowing regardless and with high unemployment and gas prices going up 86% on Obama's watch, it's only common sense to approve this pipeline. But the tree huggers are hellbent on keep gas prices high so that green energy can somehow be relevant. Green energy is costly, it comes with it's own set of eco-challenges and it's NOT practical for the average American family. The biggest investors in green are the oil companies in the first place so you may want to allow them to make as much profit as possible so they can dump those profits into R&D and come up with more practical green energy..but in the interim...don't throw the baby out with the bath water.

    January 19, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
    • jean2009

      Read my posts above and read: Exporting Energy Security: Keystone XL Exposed

      January 19, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
      • freedog

        Hogwash, Jean. Bottom line is this...at a minimum 20,000 people are going to denied the opportunity to work on this pipeline and indirectly, as much as 100,000 jobs. Everything can't be a perfect situation and it never is. Right now, NOTHING is more important to american familiies than jobs. I'd love to put you in front of the unemployed pipeline union worker and his family who recently lost their house and had to sign up for foodstamps. Maybe you could send them your next paycheck.

        January 20, 2012 at 9:48 am |
    • jean2009

      @ freedumb

      At most 6000 temporary jobs;.

      I would say the people in Nebraska have the most right to say whether or not they want that few jobs, at the expense of their aquifer. It even seems that Nebraska refineries are against it now that they truly understand it is to be shipped to the gulf to be sold to China.
      If Canada wants to ship their dirty tar sands to China for refining why not build the pipeline to the Pacific Ocean. The main reason is the Canadians have fiercely protested any plan to do just that

      As for your over bloated employment figures even TransCanada only says "COULD CREATE" a maximum 20,000 and since they would be the ones doing the hiring, they would lie through their teeth to get the deal. On the other hand, our State Department says at most 6,000.

      "TransCanada says the pipeline could create as many as 20,000 jobs, a figure opponents say is inflated. A State Department report last summer said the pipeline would create up to 6,000 jobs during construction." -http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/national_world&id=8511047

      And look at what people in the states that would be affected are saying.




      I say you are the one suckered into believing the FAUX. teapitty, Koch brothers Hogwash.

      January 20, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
      • freedog

        6,000 or 20,000 it's food on the table for American families. It's people just like you with your little eco-chips on your shoulder that is dragging our economy down. Save your liberal websites and your Obama talking points for your friends who actually will believe you...you're just another outcast looking for a cause and acceptance. Now go back into your OWS tent and take another mind altering hit of whatever...obviously, the damage is already done.

        January 20, 2012 at 5:45 pm |
    • Sasyya

      Dana,Thanks for your comment. Sometimes this may apephn for various reasons. It all checks out OK on our side. Can you give me a bit more information in case this apephns again? Which web browser were you using? What error message if any did you get? Can you describe exactly what apephned when you tried to download? Have you been able to successfully download ESN before? Can you download files OK from other sites? Are you using a relatively current version of Adobe Acrobat Reader? The answers to these questions can help me solve you problem.Blessings,Chuck Gianotti, editor of ESN

      April 3, 2012 at 2:53 am |
  19. Azeefa

    electricity today costs $1 for the eeinvalqut driving range of one gallon of gas, which ranges from $3.50 to $4 across the country Until an electric cars can do over 100 miles at 70 MPH they'll never be primary transportation.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:29 am |