Harry Reid doesn’t want the Keystone XL Pipeline. President Obama keeps putting off a decision on the project that would create thousands of jobs to appease the far left environmentalists and billionaire Tom Steyer. Democrats in red states are left in a bind, being part of the party that’s blocking jobs and energy independence. So Reid is staging a phony vote to provide them with cover before the midterm elections.
As he did a year ago as part of the Democratic budget, Mr. Reid wants to allow only a non-binding resolution. Whether the resolution comes as a stand-alone vote or as an amendment to broader energy efficiency legislation, it would have no force of law. President Obama could and would ignore it. This spares the White House from having to issue an unpopular veto. And most important from Mr. Reid’s perspective, it keeps the pipeline on ice and thus keeps tens of millions of campaign dollars flowing from the likes of anti-Keystone billionaire Tom Steyer to pour into Senate races.
The exercise would also allow vulnerable Senate Democrats running for re-election this year to claim they voted to approve the pipeline even if they didn’t. Some 16 Democrats pulled this stunt last year, and maybe this time more will. These include such energy state Democrats as Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Mark Begich of Alaska, who are running TV spots claiming to oppose more or less the entire Obama Administration energy policy.
Do Democrats do anything that isn’t underhanded?