The House Energy and Commerce Committee voted to advance Rep. Lee Terry’s bill that would require Federal Energy Regulator Commission (FERC) to approve the (already denied) Keystone XL pipeline in 30 days. In short, it’s awful. We never thought we would say this, but we actually miss the days when Lee Terry did nothing on Capitol Hill, except of course naming a post office and drinking with lobbyists.
Even FERC, the agency that Terry tosses the pipeline decision to instead of the president, hates the bill. They testified that they have no experience with oil pipelines, let alone tar sands pipelines. Additionally, the bill doesn’t give them any real authority and leaves them no time to build a defensible decision (read: we won’t be able to defend this when people sue us).
God bless House Democrats on the committee who at least tried to attach amendments that showed concern for our land, water and health, though they were all shot down. Rep. Markey tried to ensure that products refined from the tar sands stay on American shores. Rep. Eshoo suggested PHSMA complete its review of diluted bitumen pipelines before Keystone XL construction. Both are common sense when you’re talking about a maximum capacity pipeline through the heart of America.
Instead, Terry’s awful bill that ramrods Keystone XL through a sham approval process has moved forward and will now get debated on the floor of the House. The worst thing about all of this is even Lee Terry himself admits his bill has “zero chance” of becoming law. Who is playing politics again?
Despite all this, Lee Terry claims to represent Nebraskans. Is his new website “Lee Listens” a joke? Rep. Terry listens to big oil and other lobbyists. He proved he does not give a lick about landowners when he didn’t sit and listen to Randy Thompson who traveled to DC in order to testify on Terry’s bill and TransCanada’s bullying tactics.
Rep. Terry has taken nearly $400,000 from dirty energy sources into his campaign coffers. He’s yet another typical politician that cares more about who bankrolls his campaign than the real concerns of Nebraskans. Terry was caught using the words of lobbyists a couple of years back showing just how cozy he is with that world. We caught him on camera this past summer parroting big oil lobby talking points and disregarding even Gov. Heineman’s concern of our water.
It’s also rather ridiculous to listen to Terry and other House Republicans whine that Obama denied the pipeline because of politics. It’s House Republicans who played politics when they attached an arbitrary 60 day decision deadline for KXL to the payroll tax cut bill. The State Department told them it would force a denial of the project, but Terry and company act shocked and outraged that the executive branch actually carried out what they stated they would do if the GOP rushed the decision.
It’s time to call “foul” on Terry’s nonsense. On Friday, February 10th at 4pm, join us outside Terry’s Omaha office (11717 Burt St). We’ll be there with referee shirts, red flags and whistles. Just bring yourself and a friend. We will get you suited up when you arrive!