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Keystone XL goes up for a vote (UPDATED: Vote fails)

Keystone XL goes up for a vote (UPDATED: Vote fails)

Judgment day for legacy energy legislation


This really says it all.


That wasn’t a long-shot vote. That was an exercise in punishment.

The Senate has voted, and a productive and bipartisan measure has failed. Reid gave Landrieu a chance to vote “yea” on an energy bill, and Durbin made moves to insulate Democrats should anyone try to hold a member of his caucus accountable for an “anti-environment” vote. Reid’s “strategy” on Keystone XL was designed to fail, and everyone—including Mary Landrieu—knew it.

This may be the end of Landrieu’s tenure in the Senate, but it’s not the end of the road for Keystone. “Tonight, Senate Democrats once again stood in the way of a shovel-ready jobs project that would help thousands of Americans find work — a remarkable stance after an election in which the American people sent a clear message to Congress to approve serious policies like the Keystone XL Pipeline and get the Senate working again,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) in a statement following the vote. “Unfortunately, many Senate Democrats failed to hear that message. But once the 114th Congress convenes, the Senate will act again on this important legislation, and I look forward to the new Republican majority taking up and passing the Keystone jobs bill early in the New Year.”

Anyone who watched the C-SPAN feed during the vote noticed something interesting—the rest of her caucus avoided Landrieu like she was surrounded by a forcefield. Many pundits have enjoyed the “Reid is giving her a chance to redeem her candidacy” narrative, but let’s not pretend this was anything more than Democrats going through the motions and then pulling the rug out from under yet another lost cause.

Democrats have lost their majority; all they’ve got going for them is their support for a lame duck President who has done nothing but tank their approval ratings—which is still more productive than supporting an increasingly toxic member of their caucus whose vote can’t put them into the majority anyway.

George Will said just now on Special Report with Bret Baier, “I think she was going to lose anyway, and she’s certainly going to lose now.”

UPDATE: Bill fails 59-41. Sgt at arms currently attempting to restore order in the gallery.

Vote expected at 5:50 pm ET.

It’s been a dramatic day on the floor of the Senate, as Senators on both sides of the Keystone debate do their best to sway votes and win the approval of voters in their respective states.

Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) just wrapped up her final plea for the votes needed to send the pipeline project out of the Senate and to the President’s desk for approval. Analysts believe that she has secured 59 “yea” votes, and is currently seeking the necessary 60th vote to pass the measure.

Landrieu’s bill is identical to one (sponsored by her challenger, Bill Cassidy–the humanity!) passed 252-161-1 by the House last week. Only 31 Democrats crossed the aisle to support the House bill, and the success of today’s measure could depend on the support of Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) who as of yet has refused to pledge his vote.


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Good grief…the politicians have forgotten how to play politics.

They should pass it with 100 votes, cheering loudly as they do, send it to Teh Won where it will sit until the polls close in LA when he can veto it.

Their voters are stupid…they say so themselves…they will never know…

Yeah, usually the dems wait until the bill passes so they can safely vote NO.

Amy, the link is wrong. Dick Durbin is in the MINORITY.

Perhaps the link should read “Minority Dick “Whip” Durbin”(D-IL).

The Hail Mary Gamble

Mary, Mary…don’t cry. You’ll make more money as a lobbyist, but unfortunately now you’ll have to declare it!

I hope those 59 votes bode well for the next session. There many be some Dems crossing over as reality smacks them in the face. Maybe they will form a Gang of 8 to help pass some legislation. Maybe there is hope for change yet.

theduchessofkitty | November 18, 2014 at 6:36 pm

This was the “Please, PLEASE Save My Senate Career!!” Keystone XL bill.

“Sorry, Mary. You’re on your own. Besides, look at the bright side: you will make lots more as a lobbyist! Bye!”

The Party of NO strikes again!! WHO are the obstructionists???

The Senate gave Miss Piggy a 59 gun…and ONE finger…send off.

Au revoir, cher. Don’t let them ‘gator catch you in dat fat ass, y’all hear…!?!?!

Landrieux was going to lose whether this passed or not. The thing to look at here is that the Majority Leader Reid put this up for a vote, but the #2 guy, Majority Whip Dick Durbin voted ‘no’. Not only did the rank and file abandon Landrieu, but so did leadership.

The Dems are one f**ked up party right now, leaderless and approaching disarray after the 2014 wave.

Gosh, that government shutdown by Cruz sure did kill the GOP, huh? Make sure you cram it back down their throats the next time Rovian RINOs try to tell you government shutdowns are bad, bad, bad for the GOP. It’s bullshit, as dishonest as anything the Dems claim.

Ten democratic senators are up for election in 2016. Nine out of the ten voted NO:

Richard Blumenthal (Connecticut)
Barbara Boxer (California)
Patrick Leahy (Vermont)
Barbara Mikulski (Maryland)
Patty Murray (Washington)
Harry Reid (Nevada)
Brian Schatz (Hawaii)
Charles Schumer (New York)
Ron Wyden (Oregon)

Michael Bennet (Colorado) was the only one who voted YES

This was a vote on the bill, not on cloture.
So why did they need 60 votes?

Insufficiently Sensitive | November 18, 2014 at 11:20 pm

Dang, that Louisiana Purchase was a pretty short-term arrangement. The Dems should demand a refund.

I don’t get it. Sure, she’s a longshot. But why throw her under the bus for a bill that’s going to be passed in early 2015 anyway? To appease the moonbats over at Dem Underground?

What am I missing?

    If I’m Harry Reid, I don’t want to force the President to veto an infrastructure bill when Democrats are still firmly in power. It would be a terrible optic to give McConnell and his caucus a win as their first major vote out of the gate following a devastating election, and an even worse optic to have to drag Josh Earnest out to explain why the President decided to set fire to a bipartisan infrastructure bill that has both domestic and national security plus-sides.

      Estragon in reply to Amy Miller. | November 19, 2014 at 1:45 am

      Assuming, of course, that Reid has a will outside of Obama’s directions and political needs.

      Oh, Reid might cross him some time, but only if there were something in it for Reid. That’s how Harry lives in a luxury hotel suite on a Senator’s salary.

    Estragon in reply to Fen. | November 19, 2014 at 1:47 am

    ‘Green’ money, especially billionaire Tom Steyer, who donated at least $25 million to Democrats this cycle, but only to those who actively opposed Keystone.

      Karen Sacandy in reply to Estragon. | November 19, 2014 at 8:54 am

      Yes, Barbara Boxer’s performance was quite Movinggggg.

      Oh, the little Little League ballplayers,— they had black dust on them…. in Arkansas, that neighborhood had tar sands invade…. in Port Arthur, Texas, there are smokestacks…. Oh, the horror!

      And of course, more oil in the world market to bring down the price of oil – she couldn’t acknowledge that.

The sad thing is nearly all of them understand Keystone is a net benefit for carbon emissions, too. The oil will be processed, shipped, and burned anyway, much of it through the US anyway, via trucks and rail cars (along lines owned by Warren Buffett’s companies), so even more fossil fuels will be consumed by NOT building the pipeline.

It’s even safer due to less spillage and danger to the public in transport.
– –

But it’s not about that or the environment or a Senate seat at all. For Democrats, it is only about keeping mega-donor Tom Steyer – who made his billions in coal mergers in Asia – happy and donating.

That is who they are, how cynical they are, and how stupid they think the voters who support them are.

Reid allowed the vote but declined to become the 60th vote to pass the bill. Things do not look good for Landrieu on Dec 6th.

In addition, I think that there are a couple of House seats at stake in that runoff. I wonder if Reid’s ploys will have an effect on them.

Reid voted yes, I believe. Whip Durbin voted no, though.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to Henry Hawkins. | November 19, 2014 at 11:09 am

    Duh. Scroll up, Henry. Reid had to vote no for procedural reasons, as I recall.

      Freddie Sykes in reply to Henry Hawkins. | November 19, 2014 at 11:26 am

      The only time Reid would vote No for procedural reasons would be if the bill was failing and he wanted to be able to reintroduce it at a later date. If Reid had voted Yes, the bill would have passed and headed towards the White House which means there would be no reason to bring it back. Reid vote No because he does not support XL regardless of what happens to Landrieu and in the two LA House races.