Over the weekend, President Obama jetted off to a political fundraiser in California, a state where ultra-liberal Democrats have a time-honored tradition of promoting extreme environmental policies that hurt American families, the economy and jobs.

The Obama administration has wasted billions of taxpayer dollars on failed green energy projects over the years, but in a Saturday speech at UC Irvine the president didn’t waste any time in rushing to cloak his customary straw men in white lab coats. In short, he supports science. But he conveniently failed to mention his stubborn refusal to approve a pro-jobs energy infrastructure project like the Keystone XL pipeline, probably because “there is no reason, scientific or otherwise,” for delaying it:

  • “After two thorough environmental analyses, State Department experts determined that the [Keystone XL] pipeline’s impact probably would be minimal, even on climate change-inducing carbon dioxide emissions,” The Washington Post’s editorial board summarized in April.
  • According to data from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “The annual increase [in carbon emissions] from Keystone would amount to less than three-tenths of one percent of our total annual CO2-e emissions — [or] 0.286546 percent,” the Post’s Wonkblog reported, also noting that “more than 10 times that much CO2-e gets released into the atmosphere each year from methane produced by cows.”
  • A study commissioned by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration and conducted by the National Academy of Sciences found that the type of crude oil the Keystone pipeline would carry is no more corrosive than others and would not increase the chance of leaks.

So why are President Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), and other anti-affordable energy activists fighting to block improvements to our nation’s pipeline infrastructure?

Turns out their pal Tom Steyer, a California billionaire, has said that the government’s green energy policies offer “a chance to make a lot of money.” Both President Obama and Vice President Biden have held political fundraisers in Steyer’s $5.8 million San Francisco mansion, and he’s pledged to spend $100 million on the 2014 elections in support of anti-Keystone Democrats. So let’s be honest: it’s not about the science, it’s about the money. The obstructionists blocking Keystone have a different kind of green agenda: big campaign donations courtesy of a billionaire super-donor.

Sure, they may be blocking thousands of jobs and paychecks for workers, millions of dollars in new tax revenue for states, and billions of dollars in growth for our economy. But for Democrats, campaign cash comes first.