President Obama Issues Veto Threat on Tar Sands Riders

President makes it clear that he will reject a tar sands rider

12-08-2011 // Tony Iallonardo
Obama speaking in front of flag

Today, President Barack Obama pledged to “reject” poison-pill legislation to shortcut environmental review of the controversial Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. The statement comes as House leaders threaten to attach a Keystone XL pro-polluter rider to tax legislation.

Larry Schweiger, NWF President and CEO said:

President Obama’s veto threat sends a clear message to oil companies to stop messing with priority legislation for their own profit. The Keystone XL pipeline is Big Oil’s dangerous plan to lock America into a long-lasting addiction to Canadian tar sands oil, the dirtiest source of oil on the planet. We applaud President Obama for promising to veto bills that are hijacked by Big Oil and other special interests.”

The president was quite clear. “Any effort to try to tie Keystone to the payroll tax cut I will reject,” Standing next to him in a press conference was tar sands advocate Canada Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who supports connecting Canada’s tar sands to Texas refineries. “If the payroll tax cut is attached to a whole bunch of extraneous issues, then it’s not something that I’m going to accept.”

Opponents of the pipeline staged a protest outside the Canadian embassy on the same day. Media reports said Mr. Harper’s was in Washington to lobby the President to approve Keystone XL, which would move massive quantities of tar sands fuel through a 2,000 mile corridor across the U.S. heartland.

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