Vice President Joe Biden told a South Carolina environmental activist Friday that he opposes a controversial oil pipeline from Canada, but said he is "in the minority" inside the Obama administration, according to the activist's account of the conversation.Biden was speaking at South Carolina Rep. Jim Clyburn's annual "World Famous Fish Fry," and was asked about Keystone by Elaine Cooper, who is a local resident and chair of the state's chapter of the Sierra Club. Buzzfeed received an email from a national Sierra Club official.
"Here's his response from Elaine: He grabbed my Sierra Club hat on my head and said, 'yes, I do — I share your views — but I am in the minority' and smiled."The Sierra Club opposes the pipeline. Eighteen leading climate scientists wrote a letter to President Obama, opposing the pipeline, and supported a White House protest against it. The traditional media have done a shoddy job reporting on the pipeline's many dangers, but bloggers have assiduously documented what the ostensible professionals have not.
As Buzzfeed continued:
But an official in the vice president's office said Biden's views on the Keystone pipeline remain unchanged, citing a 2012 interview in which he said the administration will make its decision on Keystone only after the State Department — the government body authorized to issue permits for cross-border pipelines — concludes its review of the project later this year.Which is particularly disconcerting, considering the well-documented blatant dishonesty of the State Department's review, which has received harsh criticism from the Environmental Protection Agency.
The good news is that the vice president wants the president to do the right thing. The bad news is that he says he is in the minority, within the administration. To whom will the president listen? Despite his obvious respect and affection for Biden, don't assume that Obama will heed his vice president's advice.