Americans support Keystone XL pipeline, poll says


Americans who have heard about the Keystone XL pipeline overwhelmingly support the proposal to carry Canadian oil across the United States to Gulf Coast refineries, according to a Pew Research poll released Thursday.

Among those who knew about the pipeline, 66 percent said the federal government should approve the project. The poll found only 23 percent opposed it.

The Obama Administration rejected TransCanada’s application to build the controversial pipeline last month, saying a February deadline did not give them enough time to study alternative routes. President Barack Obama said TransCanada was free to revamp the proposal and reapply.

While the Keystone pipeline debate might be on the forefront of the energy industry, it isn’t for the general public.

Of those polled, 37 percent hadn’t heard anything about it, and nearly 40 percent said they had only heard a little bit.

The poll found that conservative Republicans were most likely to be following the issue and most likely to support it. In that group, 83 percent had heard about the controversial pipeline, and of those, 88 percent supported it.

By comparison, 63 percent of liberal Democrats knew about the pipeline and just 30 percent of them supported it – the lowest percentage of any political or ideological group.

Americans think the oil and gas industry needs more federal regulations, the poll found. The poll also found that Americans want stronger environmental protections, but there are significant partisan differences on those issues, as well.

According to the poll, 53 percent of poll respondents believed the federal government should strengthen environmental regulations. By party, 64 percent of Democrats said more environmental protection was needed, compared to 28 percent of Republicans.

A plurality of respondents also felt there wasn’t enough regulation of large corporations and the oil and gas industry. The poll found that 43 percent of Americans feel there is too little monitoring of big companies and 44 percent felt the same way about the oil and gas industry.

The partisan divide on that issue is substantial. Two-thirds of Republicans say regulations of the oil and gas industry are too strong, compared to 22 percent of Democrats. And 58 percent of Republicans want to see the government back off of big business, compared to just 16 percent of Democrats.

Simone Sebastian

49 Responses

  1. MzM says:

    The only reason they want to ship this crap all the way to Texas, is because Texas doesn’t have any environmental regulations to speak of – not when you consider all the old grandfathered-in polluting refining.

    Otherwise, it would be cheaper to refine anywhere closer to the resource and ship refined (value added) product, but that would require a NEW, environmental sound refinery.

    But Hell No – This is an Oilman Scam from the gitgo, all for export and speculators.

  2. Reidthis says:

    Zatara: Although your post does not even warrant reading, please give specific citation to back-up the “toxic mess” you refer to and that only a small percentage of crude will flow in the pipeline.

    It is ignorant statements such as yours that leads us all to believe you are actually Barack Obama posing as Zatara.

  3. George Lister says:

    Canada is experiencing a higher level of domestic opposition to their plans to build a pipeline to their coast. If they build a pipeline to Texas, they will export the oil and sell to the highest bidder. Don’t kid yourself. Close a couple more refineries to create an artificial shortage of production. We are being manipulated by the oil companies, big time.

  4. YeahBuddy says:

    If Canada builds a pipeline to their own coast, it will be used to transport oil to China. The pipeline to Texas would be to supply North American crude for refinery stock, to go into American gasoline products. Do you drive? Ride a bus?
    When the left gets their wish and domestic oil/gas/coal supplies are cut off, it will be the majority of liberal voters who will be paying the price in energy prices, middle-class jobs, and entry-level opportunities. Long term, we need to find alternative energy, but these sources are no where close, right now. Better to use what we have, then to depend on foreign sources to look after our best interests. Are you really willing to live without electricity, or can you really afford to pay 3x, 4x, 5x the current rate? More?
    Think about ‘unanswered prayers’.

  5. AmericanDefender says:

    Change the POTUS, fix the PROBLEM!

  6. BarnicleBill says:

    Of course the public supports this. It’s a huge step in our economic recovery. But ‘BO’ chose to ignore the public and support his far Left supporters to try and kill ‘Big Oil’. This AH is a ‘one termer’… and good riddance.

  7. Gabacho says:

    Impeach the con artist from Kenya. Obama and Salazar’s goal, has always been $10+ per gallon ! That will reel in the evil whites into the city. Into a tighter circle. Into the projects !

    Obama wants gas, so expensive, that the evil white man will be unable to have that ranch, bayhouse, or lake house !
    Obama associates American whites, with the colonists in Africa, that his father hated so much.
    If you are stupid enough, to allow this Pan-Leninist to remain in power-you deserve $10 gas !

  8. Mortimer Hotclaw says:

    Whatever happened to Majority rules with respect to the minority?
    We’ve become a nation of bowing to the minority and then apologizing over and over, then compensating the minority because their feelings were hurt

  9. buttercup60 says:

    This means Obama will support it.

  10. orangemen says:

    Here we go again. The reason for the pipeline is because it is taking trucking to transport the crude from North Dakota and Canada.The liability of a potential spill is greater then those of a pipeline. The pipe line will create jobs for those states also. Obama needs to get his head out of his —. Jim’s retort to Zatara is right on. Zatara needs to do his homework a little better. LETS BUILD THE PIPELINE

  11. Dry Noodles says:

    There’s a small problem with you link, Mark. There’s not a single mention of George Soros in the article or any links within the article.

  12. passepartout says:

    Ahh, the non-partisan daily caller, definitely biased reading material. Soros name is not even in the article, but if it turns on your conspiracy button, hey thats OK.

  13. Hotshot007 says:

    Some serious cherry-picking going on here

    The poll indicates that 77% don’t-know-Jack about the Keystone Pipeline project. Apparently Americans think the O&G industry needs more federal regulations. Apparently want stronger environmental protections.

    A tiny subgroup advocates construction.

    The proponents still refuse to fill in the details.

    The Devil is always in the details.

  14. SaltWaterCroc says:

    Sure – it’s a great idea, if you like the idea of a foreign company coming into Texas, using eminent domain (great idea for a private company, just like GWB used it for the baseball stadium) to take land, break up farms, and threaten creeks and streams. Why can’t they just follow the route of existing pipelines? Because folks who don’t have land being condemned approve.

  15. NotanXpert says:

    Let Canada build the pipeline to it’s own coast! Why are they trying to get it to an American Coast? Because they think dealing with our politicians and NGO’s would be easier than dealing with their own. Besides, this is just a ploy to boost the value of their reserves. They believe that the US mid-west refiners are not paying fair market value for Canadian crude. They believe, getting it to a coast allows them to receive higher pricing.

  16. Peter says:

    The current state of gas prices worries me a lot and it can only be attributed to Obama’s recent policies. He didn’t avail himself of the opportunity to benefit from the Canadian energy sector that has recently been on the rise and now he is forced to look for other solutions such as higher taxes for the rich and the biggest corporations to reduce the budget deficit. After a series of unreasonable steps comes outright discrimination. What a policy!

  17. Mark from Louisiana says:

    You can read here about who is putting their money into blocking Keystone

    Of course George Soros is near the top of the list

  18. Jim says:

    Zatara, the crude oil from the Canadian oil sands is upgraded by adding condensate to it. It is not full of chemicals and it is not a threat to drinking water. The Ogallala Aquifer has been ferociously pumped by agriculture for a century or longer and is within 10 years of depletion due to poor water conservation practices. Millions of tons of agricultural chemicals have been dumped or sprayed onto the ground above the aquifer for decades, yet the people of the Great Plains still drink the water. How could this be? It is because substances spilled or intentionally put on the surface cannot enter the aquifer, and neither would an oil spill. Calling it a toxic waste highway through people’s backyards is just plain imagery using hyperbole and perjoratives. It isn’t true.

  19. Maddog says:

    Sure, everybody that supports this will think differently when they find out it’s running thru their property. Plus, the word is, it’s the dirtiest of oils. Full of toxins and poisons. Probably less than 10 percent of this gook will ever be a source of energy. The rest will be a toxic byproduct that will end up somewhere along the Texas coast.

  20. cantexoilguy says:

    I have a question. Why can’t they run the pipeline down the right-of-ways they already own?

  21. Pipeliner says:

    It’s amazing. Polls show 2/3’s of Americans support the pipeline but you choose to show some protesters and their stupid signs as a visual with the story. Doesn’t seem to matter what the subject is – if a demonstration takes place with, say, only 2 or 3 people, they get face time in the media as if they represent everyone. How twisted is that?

  22. nan chira says:

    Buffet’s co. hasn’t done well in 4 out of last 5 years so he has to dupe Washington so his co. can earn more. The best known investor now seems to be the Saudi Prince. Buffet serves his shareholders (many the 1%) well but not the 99%. There is no government realistic policy on Energy so 4 years from now we’re going to pay much more for the gas which will makes what we pay at the pump now like a bargain. If you lived through the Arab oil embargo period you would feel it coming. We should resist the urge to buy big gas guzzling SUV’s and pickups. The rest of the world can leave without them why can’t we. You can see them when you go abroad.

  23. Common Sense says:

    Ouch!!! That’s gotta hurt Mr. Obama!!! Vote this jerk out!!!

  24. Thrudahoop says:

    What the vast majority think don’t matter none to Obama. Remember Obamacare and the vast majority didn’t want it.

  25. BarksintheCountry says:

    Two thirds of Americans may approve the idea. In obama’s world what Americans approve of does not interfere with his corrupt, power-grabbing politics.

  26. dr says:

    The will of the people is not important to Obama

  27. MM says:

    Matter cannot be created nor destroyed. Digging up dirty tar shales and sending it out our tailpipes into the atmosphere seems foolhardy.

  28. MM says:

    To all his naysayers, maybe Obama is smarter than you know. His push for renewable and green energy is a validation that the earths environment is nearing crisis. Global warming, air pollution, declining soil fertility, and less productive fisheries tell the tale. So who is right, a cautionary visionary concerned about a closed global environment showing signs of stress, or his critics; who take the populist, but erroneous, road of drill, baby drill, more tax cuts so we can consume more today and worry about the debt later. The world is going the way of the bison herds of the 19th century.

  29. MM says:

    We are polluting the earth at an alarming rate as we exceed 6B in population. The earth cannot sustain ever and ever increasing amounts of consumption. This generation will leave nothing but collapse for future generations, especially as global population ever increases. This century is a story of a few countries overconsumption at the expense of billions who underconsume. All boats do not lift simultaneously when global resources are concentrated in the hands of a few and the polluting cost of overconsumption by that few leaves very little for the rest. We are the worlds gluttons, leaving nothing for the rest of the poor world and soon, nothing for our descendants. And we are willing to enforce being the worlds gluttons at the end of the barrel of a gun.
    This is the legacy of democratic capitalism, for no politician in a democratic society populated by cretins would dare tell his constituency that they must live with less if we are to save our world.

  30. rad says:

    You know when you spend millions on ads promoting the pipeline as a good thing then that’s what you get. People supporting this just follow the ads and the positive. Funny though but there have been no articles in the this paper or others about the protest against the pipeline. Nothing about the protest in Paris texas where the property will be taken away from home owners and ranchers. Which by the way the company in charge are foreign entity’s. Lucky I have CBC radio and can listen to more reports of the real issues. Unlike the same media in Houston that missed the Eron scandal

  31. olddispatcher says:


    That might have been true at one time, but your information is a bit out of date. As in WAY out of date.

    There are currently eight pipelines in North Dakota that are transporting crude oil and they are operated by some of the biggest names in the business.

    Check out for more information.

  32. DON says:


  33. jack says:

    buffet gets 18$ a barrel to ship oil out of north dakota and montana on his burlington santa fe railroad. the pipeline would ruin this rip off. no way the bamster approves a pipeline that would screw his buddy buffet! wake up!

  34. Anonymoose says:

    The oil will get refined here, and sent overseas. A good majority of gasoline produced in this country goes elsewhere because they can get top dollar overseas. So if you’re thinking that this pipeline will lower gas prices.. YOU’RE WRONG.

    People have been mislead about this pipelines actual potential. There won’t be that many jobs created. It’s a pollution nightmare.

    • Kurt says:

      You are absolutely right. China will be the biggest benefactor of this pipeline, but you never hear about it. This isn’t about American jobs or lowering the cost it’s about companies making more money. Whether or not this pipeline is built impacts everyday Americans very little, but we are led to believe it has this huge impact of jobs, lower fuel costs etc. eventually, it will be approved and we’ll forget we got nothing out of it that was promised.

  35. olddispatcher says:


    What the Gov. of Nebraska told Fox News is correct. The Republicans there could approve the route.

    So what’s the hold-up, Gov? You speak about the President being ‘decisive’ and yet the Republicans in Nebraska are the first to admit they are unable to come up with a decision on this.

    Speed it up, Nebraska Republicans. The US is getting tired of waiting on you while you play politics with this line.

  36. olddispatcher says:

    Mark from LA…..

    Uh, you do understand that you just repeated almost everything I just said?

    According to TransCanada a route will likely be approved by the Republicans by hopefully September. They seem to be laying the blame for this squarely at the feet of the State of Nebraska which has so far rejected every route proposal TransCanada has put forth.

    The real hold-up is in Nebraska and Nebraska is run by Republicans. I understand the truth of a matter can be difficult to deal with, but until those in DC that are pushing for this get real about it and address the real problem I don’t look for it to move forward anytime soon.

    In fact….. I can easily see where this will lead right up to the election and just a few days before the election, in October, the Republicans in Nebraska will shut this down again and the Republicans in DC will start screaming about how Obama is at fault.

    People want this line built. I want this line built. Everyone I know wants this line built.

    And those that are really involved in this don’t make up facts to get votes. They focus on the problem, and the problem is the route through Nebraska that only the Republicans in that state can grant.

    Sorry for the dose of reality.

  37. mark says:

    Should’ve called it what it is, a diluted bitumen pipeline.

  38. Bilbo Balderdash says:

    The pipeline is needed to increase the volume of refined gasoline exported out of the USA high so the price of Gasoline in the USA escalates, especially before the election. Why are we exporting our refined oil products and at the same time listening to those that want to open up drilling everywhere? Folks, the price of gasoline is being manipulated and the price has zilch to do with any shortage.

  39. TXSFRED says:

    I hope that means 2/3 of Americans will vote ABO. If they don’t I will have lost quite a bit of confidence in the electorate as it is obvious he is in over his head and so “agendized” as to be useless.

  40. Ivar says:

    I wonder if they bothered to ask if the people supported the turned down pipeline plan or a new less environmentally sensitive pipeline, even if it took a little longer. I think people would say the new line. I wonder what percentage though understand that most of the oil products will likely end up overseas.

  41. Byron Allen says:

    As usual, Obama is living in an alternative universe where he knows best and could care less what Americans think. He lives where he conducts white house parties with the stars and musicians, where exotic vacations are the norm. This guy is clueless and needs to get a dose of reality in November.

  42. Mark from Louisiana says:

    OldDispatcher you can’t blame the Republicans in Nebraska.

    President Obama might be compelled to make a decision on the Keystone pipeline before the election after all.
    Though the president just rejected a permit for the controversial project, Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman told Fox News that he expects to send the Obama administration a new proposed route for the pipeline well before Election Day.
    “I fully expect we could get it done certainly in the early September, August time frame,” the governor told Fox News on Thursday. “I would send the letter back to the president of the United States saying we approve it and if he were decisive, he could turn around and approve it shortly thereafter, well before the November election.”

  43. Zatara says:

    Anyone who has read anything about this pipeline, must know that this isn’t the Alaskan pipeline we are talking about. It’s a pipeline that would carry billions of gallons of chemicals, solvents, and a small percentage of oil product (the aforementioned are necessary to get the tar sands in liquid form) through very heavily populated (by humans not just bears and caribou) areas of the U.S. Basically, a toxic waste highway right through about 20 million people’s backyards! Wake up America!

  44. established.facts says:

    yaaaa… all of america supports the idea , but the illegal alien wants to destroy our way of life , and he shows it daily…
    how many years will it take for us to repair what he has done to us ?

  45. clr55 says:

    No, no. no. Let the Chinese refine it. They are so much more environmentally responsible than the US

  46. Greg says:

    Doesnt matter. Americans support this, Obama will block it, Americans dont support something, Obama will pass it (obamacare)

  47. olddispatcher says:

    On TransCanada’s website they say they do not expect to win approval to cross Nebraska until at least September or October of this year. The folks that run the state of Nebraska are still not happy with the proposed route and have not approved the line.

    By the way, the State of Nebraska is run by Republicans. If you really want this line to be built then contact the State of Nebraska, let them know how you feel, and insist that the Republicans there stop dragging their feet. If Presidential Approval were granted tomorrow the line could still not be built as long as Nebraska is blocking the route.

  48. txloanguy says:

    Jobs and oil independence? What’s not to like. Obama is ridiculing the cries for exploration and production. He’ll lose that one. He has done nothing to lower the cost of gas and the public is sick of it. $Bs spent on “Green” energy that is being lost on cronies and bad businesses. After trying to destroy oil and gas companies Obama should realize this is his biggest weakness and change his policies. Won’t happen. We can’t stand another 4 years of this guy.