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John Hoeven Continues Campaign of Lies About Keystone XL PDF Print E-mail
Written by Chet   
Wednesday, 31 July 2013 22:38

Hoeven2s[Update X 1] North Dakota Senator John Hoeven has again repeated his demonstrably false statement that the Keystone XL pipeline would create 42,000 construction jobs.

See that sentence I just wrote? You could probably call that sentence "the lede."  There's a word in that sentence that's kind of important.  The word is "demonstrably."  The word "demonstrably" is an adverb that means "in an obvious and provable manner." (Source.)  When paired with the word "false," the phrase "demonstrably false" suggests there is incontrovertable, findable evidence that would show that the thing being descibed is not true; the thing is a lie.  The notion that something can be proved to be false is something completely foreign to North Dakota journalists.

President Obama has said, recently, that the Keystone XL pipeline won't create as many jobs as Republicans claim it will create.

"Any reporter who is looking at the facts would take the time to confirm that the most realistic estimates are this might create maybe 2,000 jobs during the construction of the pipeline -- which might take a year or two -- and then after that we’re talking about somewhere between 50 and 100 jobs in a economy of 150 million working people."

New York Times

John Hoeven says he's outraged because President Obama is making up numbers about jobs that might be constructed by the potential construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline. Hoeven should know about making up numbers, as he's always pulling numbers out of his ass.  Here's Hoeven's latest Keystone XL nonsense.

“He’s just flat wrong on the numbers,” Hoeven said. “He’s talking about 2,000 construction jobs, but his own State Department says it will create 42,000 construction jobs. (Obama) talks about the oil not being used in the United States and gas prices being higher when his own Department of Energy did a report stating the oil will be used in the U.S. and will lower gas prices. The president is contradicting his own agencies.”

Dickinson Press

So Obama says the most realistic estimates suggest KXL will create "maybe 2,000 jobs" and John Hoeven says there's a State Department report pegging it at "42,000 construction jobs."  It seems like a semi-competent reporter could look into those numbers and "demonstrate" who is closer to the truth.  Am I right?

Or... if you were a completely incompetent reporter, you'd just leave it as a "he-said-she-said" disagreement. Only you'd leave it with the President's quote, and Hoeven saying the President's administration has estimated the 42,000 construction jobs number.

Okay, so... Let's pretend I'm a competent journalist.  Here's what I'd do: I'd look for the Obama administration's State Department report. And do you know what I'd find?  


Construction of the proposed Project would generate temporary, positive socioeconomic impacts as a result of local employment, taxes, spending by construction workers, and spending on construction goods and services. Including direct, indirect, and induced effects, the proposed Project would potentially support approximately 42,100 average annual jobs across the United States over a 1-to 2 year construction period (of which, approximately 3,900 would be directly employed in construction activities).

The State Department Report (at E.S. 5.4.2)

See?  That's the actual report Hoeven is talking about.  It really wasn't that hard to find. (I used "the Google" again.) Hoeven says the State Department report says the building of the Keystone XL would "create 42,000 construction jobs."  The report says "3,900" construction jobs over a 1-to-2 year period.  Is there a "42,000" number in there?  Well, there's the number of jobs the KXL would "potentially support."  And I bet there's a definition somewhere for "potentially support."  A good reporter could look into that and would probably find out that it means the estimated 3,900 Keystone XL construction workers would stop in at businesses that employ 42,000 people.  That's probably gas stations, convenience stores, grocery stores, restaurants, gift shops, hotels, clinics, hospitals and lots of other businesses.  Supporting those jobs is not the same as creating construction jobs.

And, admittedly, 3,900 construction jobs is not the same as the President's "maybe 2,000 jobs" number, right?  But he said "maybe" and he said "most realistic estimates."  So what might he be talking about?  Well, I don't know what "realistic estimate" he's talking about, but I do know that Cornell University did an indpendent study and concluded the jobs number could be as low as 2,500, and as high as 4,650.  (Source.)  Maybe there are other estimates out there, but that appears to be an objective report.

So maybe the President thinks the independent Cornell University study is more realistic than the optimistic State Department study.  But that leaves a bigger question:  Whose statement was "demonstrably false?"  The guy who said the "most realistic" estimate was "maybe 2,000" when there is an independent study saying the construction jobs estimate is as low as 2,500?  Or the guy who says the State Department report says KXL will create 42,000 construction jobs when the State Department report says it will create 3,900 construction jobs? And why didn't the Dickinson Press (ForumComm) reporter tell us about that demonstrable evidence?  Is it incompetence again?  Or just bias?

I report. You decide.

[UPDATE:  I just realized I forgot to pick apart one of the other obvious lies in Hoeven's quoted statement, above.  He says building the pipeline will lower gas prices.  I've written about this before, so I'm just going to cut and past what I wrote, and provide a link.  But I want you to know that it's not ME making up these facts; it's the company that wants to build the pipeline. They're the ones who insist building the pipeline will cause gas prices in the Midwest to increase.  Here you go...

Gas prices are guaranteed to increase in North Dakota and surrounding states because Canadian oil will no longer be available to North Dakota's refinery and others in the region. By advocating for the Keystone XL pipeline, John Hoeven, Rick Berg and all the Republican oil company puppets are advocating for higher gas prices for North Dakotans. How do we know this is true?!?  The company proposing the pipeline openly admits it -- even brags about it -- in Canada.  "According to TransCanada, KXL will increase the price of heavy crude oil in the Midwest by almost $2 to $4 billion annually, and escalating for several years. (Click here) It will do this by diverting major volumes of Tar Sands oil now supplying the Midwest refineries, so it can be sold at higher prices to the Gulf Coast and export markets. As a result, consumers in the Midwest could be paying 10 to 20 cents more per gallon for gasoline and diesel fuel, adding up to $5 billion to the annual US fuel bill.  (Click here, go to page 27, for source)

An Intelligent Conversation About the Keystone XL

Hoeven might not like the facts, but it's a sign of his lack of character that he continues to choose to make up his own new facts while advocating for his Chinese owners.

Comments (3)add comment

Jake said:

Wasn't Heidi in support of the KXL as well? I'm pretty sure she was.
August 02, 2013
Votes: +0

Chet said:

To the best of my knowledge, yes, Heidi has expressed support for KXL. I am not aware of her lying about how many jobs it would create, lately. If she does, I'll call her out on it too. Just like I've done in the past.

Blind support of KXL -- or support for KXL based upon lies, ignorance or whoring yourself out to the Chinese government -- is a bad idea, no matter which political party you're in.

If someone could make an honest, legitimate argument for KXL, I'd love to hear it. I just haven't heard it yet.
August 02, 2013
Votes: +1

Eliot Glassheim said:

Thanks for your factual, accurate reporting. We need this clarity on every issue that comes before us.

My understanding of what you've reported is: The KXL pipeline will create approximately 3500 construction jobs [Cornel: 2500-4650] for about two years. The multiplier effect of these jobs will create about 38,000 additional jobs for that two year period.

Based on your research, does this seem a true statement?
August 02, 2013
Votes: +0

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