President Obama has rejected extending the Keystone XL Pipeline to bring Canadian crude to refineries in Texas. Presidential candidate Ted Cruz — a senator from Texas — is among the Republicans blasting the decision.
“What we saw today is a classic example of the Washington cartel operating and also a corruption of the modern Democratic Party,” Cruz told reporters in Des Moines late this afternoon.
Cruz called it a “cold and cynical” decision not only from President Obama, but other Democrats like Hillary Clinton.
“They have chosen between two traditional ‘favorite children’ of the Democratic Party,” Cruz said. “They have chosen to go with California environmentalist billionaires instead of the jobs of union members and they just made the calculation, I assume, that there’s more money they can get from the California billionaires and union members’ jobs are not that important.”
President Obama earlier today said the project would have “undercut” America’s global leadership on taking “serious action” to prevent climate change. All three of the 2016 Democratic presidential candidates have expressed opposition to the pipeline. Cruz said Republicans will win in 2016 if they run a “populist campaign” that appeals to union members and others who are disillusioned by the decision. And Cruz contends the environment “is worse off” because pipelines are safer than ocean tankers and he predicts the Canadians will send their oil to refineries in China which pollute more than U.S. refineries.
“If you are a Birkenstock-wearing, tattooed, tree-hugging Greenpeace activist, you should love the Keystone Pipeline,” Cruz said, shortly after speaking at the National Religious Liberties Conference in Des Moines.
Other Republican presidential candidates weighed in on President Obama’s decision. Donald Trump tweeted that there was “no downside” to the pipeline. Bobby Jindal said thousands of high-paying jobs were being “left on the altar of Obama’s environmental extremism.” Obama accused Republicans of using “overinflated” rhetoric about the project.