Obama’s rejection of the Keystone oil pipeline has now led the Canadian company that originally proposed the plan to file a federal lawsuit seeking billions in damages.
TransCanada argues that Obama exceeded his presidential power as outlined by the U.S. Constitution when he decided to kill the pipeline deal. The company has filed both a federal lawsuit in Houston, Texas and a separate legal petition asking for billions in damages as a result of the rejection. The basis for the lawsuit asking for billions is TransCanada’s claim that the U.S. violated its obligations under the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Obama controversially rejected the pipeline deal back in November after he deemed it would hurt the U.S. efforts in finalizing a global climate change deal. Obama, along with the State Department, concluded the Keystone pipeline would not benefit the U.S.
TransCanada attacks Obama for rejecting the deal not based on the content or plan of the project, but rather a belief of how the U.S. would be perceived internationally in regards to climate change. The suit rightly says that Obama should not have been responsible for the decision, and instead Congress, who control the regulation of interstate and international commerce, should have stepped in.
Secretary of State John Kerry, U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and Secretary of the Department Interior Sally Jewell are all named as defendants in the case.
The Keystone pipeline was originally introduced in September 2008 and planned on carrying more than 800,000 barrels of crude oil per day to oil refineries within Texas. Because of Obama’s ill-reasoned rejection, the U.S. lost a golden opportunity to create thousands of jobs and add billions to the economy.