Obama is losing support for his pipeline obstructionism.
President Obama continues to stand in the way of the Keystone XL pipeline, though increasingly he’s standing alone. A growing number of Democrats are rejecting the President’s fealty to green interests, aware that it will be an electoral liability this fall.
That’s the message from this week’s House vote on a short-term highway bill, which included the latest provision to expedite the pipeline. The bill passed 293-127, as 69 Democrats broke with Mr. Obama to support the $7 billion project to move oil from Canada and North Dakota’s Bakken Shale to the Gulf Coast.
That’s 22 more Democrats than the 47 who voted for the Keystone XL last year, and the total House vote would be enough to override a Presidential veto. The White House issued a veto threat on Tuesday to try to reduce the House margin—to little effect. Big Labor and Western Governors such as Montana Democrat Brian Schweitzer support the Keystone for the thousands of jobs it will create, which is adding to the pressure on Capitol Hill Democrats.
The House vote will in turn raise the pressure on Senate Democrats, who are being asked once again to walk the plank for the President’s re-election effort. When the Senate last voted on Keystone in March, 11 Democrats joined all 47 Republicans in favor of the pipeline.