Here’s the list of Democrats who voted with the Republicans today to approve the $5.4 Billion Keystone XL pipeline. Two of the 29 are from New Jersey; Donald Norcross (NJ-1) and Albio Sires (NJ-8). House vote was 270-152, on a bill identical to one passed by the Senate in late January.
If you want to say anything to them about it, you can use Twitter. Tweet to:
Neither has posted on this vote; both know it wouldn’t be their best play (Norcross’ Twitter account is inactive since Jan. 21).
President Obama will have 10 days to issue a veto, which he’s very likely to do. Speaker John Boehner says the president is “standing with a bunch of left-fringe extremists and anarchists. (Watch). Norcross and Sires are standing with Boehner and the Republicans.
The President believes approval of the pipeline should rest with the executive branch; presidential authority to approve trans-border facilities dates back to the administration of Ulysses S. Grant. The State Department is responsible for reviewing applications for presidential permits of pipelines crossing our borders to determine whether allowing construction is in the U.S. national interest. State’s process is in progress, but the Republican-controlled Congress (and its friends on ‘our’ side) are eager to flex new muscles and get around process. If this is vetoed, expect to see KeystoneXL attached to some other legislation; this isn’t dead, despite the fact there aren’t enough votes in either house to override.
Norcross in an earlier vote for the pipeline, cited the tens of thousands of jobs he said it would create and his desire to see his country less dependent on the Middle East for energy. In fact the pipeline is designed not to relieve America’s thirst for oil but rather to take Canadian tar sands oil (among the planet’s dirtiest oils) through 2,000 miles of pipe from Alberta to the Gulf shores of Texas where it would be sold, and not to us. Anywhere along that route, there’s potential for environmental disaster. Anybody with even a cursory knowledge of energy companies is aware they’re comfortable taking huge risks with the the environment, because there’s just so much damned profit to be made (and clearly, renewable energy is where we should be investing).
Sires and Norcross, a couple of safe Democrats in a blue state. What a sorry-assed vote.