In his first few days in office, Biden was more interested in reversing many of President Trump’s economic, immigration, and energy policies than enacting his own. One of the first things President Biden did in office revoked the permit for the Keystone XL Pipeline in order to “confront the climate crisis.” This move instantly killed 11,000 jobs, including 8k union jobs.
Keystone workers blasted Biden for the decision to cancel the project, admitting that they are used to temporary layoffs in their line of work but never for political reasons. They depend on temporary projects to make a career and had lost their jobs simply because the President didn’t want them to work.
“What happened today was different. I got laid off for political reasons and stupidity and the future doesn’t look so bright. I’ve got a sickening feeling in my stomach tonight and an aching feeling in my heart that I’ve never felt,” said Keystone welding foreman Neal Crabtree in an emotional Facebook post.
Crabtree talked about how he’d always shake the hands of people he hires and the people that are sent from out of work lists before they are laid off. “We laugh and smile and are proud of a job well done. Today it wasn’t like that, I laid guys off because the President doesn’t want them to work. I went to my truck and literally cried,” he explained.
The Laborers’ International Union of North America, which endorsed Biden, also expressed disdain on Twitter for cutting the lifeline for so many workers, killing thousands of jobs, and taking $2.2 billion in payroll out of workers’ pockets. The United Association of Union Plumbers and Pipefitters also argued that this decision will raise energy costs for American families and strip local investments that come with pipeline construction to the communities.
Subcontractor and Michels Corp general manager Josh Senk talked about the mess this decision has put some states in. Republican U.S Rep. Bryan Steil said he couldn’t disagree more with the President’s decision regarding the project, arguing that it killed hundreds of Wisconsin jobs. Republican Reps, including Sen. Ted Cruz, also called for a reversal of the order as a “last-ditch effort” to save the project.
Biden’s order declared that the United States must exercise vigorous climate leadership in order to put the world on a sustainable climate pathway. He argued that it would not be consistent with his Administration’s economic and climate imperatives, and said that the Keystone XL Pipeline, if built, would only require 35 to 50 permanent positions anyway. Others have stated the obvious that all construction jobs are temporary but that does not give Presidents the authority to destroy them.
President Biden has made it abundantly clear that his liberal agenda is to put the international community first and American workers second. He’s just sent thousands of Americans right back in the unemployment line. Wasn’t he supposed to build back better?