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Oklahomans voice their support for the Keystone pipeline

October 01, 2011 J

MIDWEST CITY - A boisterous and large crowd filled the Reed Center Friday evening to let the State Department know that Oklahomans favor an expansion of the Keystone Pipeline Project from its current end in Cushing.

Hundreds were in attendance, ranging from union workers and political and business leaders that all favored the project to those who opposed the plan due to environmental concerns. And AFP-Oklahoma and a swarm of activists were there to stand in favor of the project because it will be a major boost to the state’s economy, providing great jobs for Oklahomans and opening new revenue streams for tax coffers.

Many waited their turn to stand up and tell the State Department what they thought of the project. State Director Stuart Jolly was one of those that spoke to the crowd. He hammered home the core issue – that this will create jobs for Oklahomans. He added that this is an energy state and the plan fits in nicely with infrastructure already in place. He called out opponents of the plan, saying he believes they only oppose the plan because of ideology and an automatic dislike of anything related to fossil fuels.

Major state leaders were also in attendance to chime in.

The state’s Lt. Governor, Todd Lamb, opened the evening with his comments. An advocate of a better business environment in the state, Lamb said this plan is a great way to act in our nation’s own best interests and take the energy issue into our own hands. He added that this plan is beneficial to our neighbor to the north, Canada, and that this makes both countries stronger.

State Rep. Danny Morgan(Prague) supported the plan as well, but for different reasons. He stated that this pipeline is vital to better preserve Oklahoma’s infrastructure. Already in poor condition in many spots, Morgan said there would be more stress on the state’s transportation system if moved in another way. The long-term negatives without this pipeline would only hurt the state in the future, he said. Not only that, but this pipeline will support Oklahoma’s oil as well.

David Holt, state Senator from Oklahoma City, spoke in support as well. He said it was in America’s best interest to move forward with this plan because it will help foster more economic growth in the state. He added that the we can’t drag our feet in getting this deal done.

Many citizens spoke in favor of the project, citing the need for better job options and sounder domestic energy policy. One citizen said that over $100 billion in oil sales last year went overseas to countries on the USA’s terror state watch list. The vast majority in attendance supported the plan.

Friday’s listening session was just one of a string of events the State Department has set up for the public in affected states to voice their support or opposition to the pipeline expansion. The stop in Midwest City was just one in the 90-day window State will use to decide if the project gains approval. As of now, nothing has been decided. That’s why voicing support was so vital. After this, they at least know Oklahoma is on board with the plan.

If this whole deal is news to you, check out the plan for the pipeline here. And you can also get a good look at just where the pipeline will be set.

AFP-Oklahoma wants to thank all of our great activists for showing up to support the measure. We’ll keep you posted as the status of this plan changes.

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