Chip Cravaack is being outspoken today, starting with this op-ed. Chip’s op-ed about the Keystone XL Pipeline is spot on, starting with this opinion:

Labor unions, such as the 49ers of the International Union of Operating Engineers, have strongly urged the Obama Administration to issue a presidential permit giving the go-ahead for the project. And workers along the pipeline route are ready to begin construction in 2012.

That was the case until the administration told them not so fast, that maybe in 2013 it would decide to issue a permit for the project.

Supporters of this project have every right to be angry and frustrated that the administration is withholding its blessing. At a time of high unemployment and our country’s growing reliance on oil from the Middle East it should be an obvious decision to approve construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline project. Why the delay? It would appear politics are at play, at the expense of America’s unemployed and underemployed.

This shouldn’t be a difficult decision. The pro-Pipeline project logic is exceptionally straightforward. Unemployment in the construction industry in nearing 14%. Our reliance on Middle East oil isn’t wise.

This administration’s decision to not decide this issue has the average man or woman on the street scratching their heads. The explanation for their decision is actually pretty straightforward. Chip’s statement on budget negotiations offers insight into the administration’s thinking:

“It’s unbelievable that the provisions aimed toward protecting private property and ensuring greater public safety from problem wolves was removed from this legislation by Senate Democrat Leadership and the White House. Minnesota’s Eighth District has the highest population of gray wolves in the Upper Midwest, and currently the state DNR, farmers, livestock producers, and families have little means to deal with this matter accordingly. I urge the House to quickly consider Rep. Kline’s House bill for a more responsible wolf management program in Minnesota.”

Rep. Kline and Rep. Cravaack support legislation that would return control of Minnesota’s wolf population to Minnesota’s DNR. The Obama administration can’t afford to delist the timber wolf prior to this election cycle. President Obama is dragging his feet on delisting the timber wolf for the same reason he’s dragging his feet on deciding on the fate of the Keystone XL Pipeline.

Obama’s administration is dragging their feet on these decisions because he thinks he can’t afford to alienate the environmental extremists in his base.

This is politics at its worst. President Obama made speech after speech in which he criticized Republicans for putting partisanship over doing what’s best for America. That’s projection. Now, it’s politics at its worst.

Militant environmentalists can’t defend their positions on the Keystone XL Pipeline and they certainly can’t scientifically defend their position on not delisting timber wolves in Minnesota.

Thanks to militant environmentalists, farmers, union workers and middle class families are getting hurt. Timber wolves are shrinking livestock herds in places where they haven’t been in decades. Oil pipelines aren’t getting built because militant environmentalists tie things up in courts with no repercussion for their militant actions.

Minnesota owes a debt of gratitude to Chip Cravaack for his sensible leadership on these important issues.

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