They have apparently ceded the environmental argument.
House Democrats are largely putting aside environmental concerns for the moment in favor of focusing on an “only in America” agenda as their marketing strategy against Keystone XL legislation.
The Energy and Commerce Committee is expected Tuesday to pass legislation from Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.) directing the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to quickly approve TransCanada’s proposed pipeline.
But first, Democrats are offering message amendments requiring oil pumped through the pipeline to stay in the U.S. and steel and other materials to be U.S.-based as well.
The strategy — an extension of a “Make It In America” agenda long championed by Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) and the Obama administration — allows Democrats to try to blame Republicans for sending jobs overseas on bills Democrats would oppose otherwise on environmental and other grounds…