Is the Keystone Jobs Project on Today’s Agenda, Mr. President?
- AMERICAN MANUFACTURERS: The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) says the Keystone XL extension “is estimated to create 20,000 high-paying manufacturing and construction jobs and will provide access to affordable sources of energy.” Manufacturers “are excited about this opportunity to invest and expand,” says NAM, but “remain waiting on the sidelines” while President Obama delays action. A study by the Perryman Group found the Keystone XL project would eventually lead to the “creation of hundreds of thousands of jobs.”
- LABOR UNIONS: Labor unions, key supporters of the Democratic Party, believe “workers from all over the United States would benefit” from the Keystone XL project. The International Union of Operating Engineers Local 139 in Wisconsin says the Keystone extension “will create 20,000 jobs paying family-supporting wages,” and will increase “demand for skilled operating engineers, pipefitters and laborers from across the Midwest.” And the AFL-CIO says “the privately-financed Keystone XL pipeline project is projected to create tens of thousands of U.S. jobs in construction and manufacturing.”
- STATE DEPARTMENT: The Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) by the Obama administration’s State Department says building the pipeline as proposed is the “preferred alternative,” and – according to The Hill – found that the Keystone project “poses little environmental risk if managed properly” and will have “no significant impact” on nearby resources. The State Department website catalogues the extensive review process Keystone has undergone in the three years since it was proposed.
- DEMOCRATS & REPUBLICANS: Forty-seven House Democrats voted with Republicans to require the administration to quickly act on the Keystone XL extension. Nearly two dozen House Democrats wrote a letter to President Obama saying the project will “create 20,000 direct jobs” and “spur the creation of 118,000 spin-off jobs.” And a bipartisan group of 14 Senators wrote a letter saying Keystone would “provide thousands of high-quality jobs for Americans and invest billions of private sector dollars in our nation's economy.”
Ironically, President Obama’s forum today is billed as “Insourcing American Jobs” – even though the longer the president delays, the more he risks sending the thousands of Keystone jobs overseas to countries like China.