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Fact Checkers: Obama Claims About Keystone XL Jobs Are False

Both Glenn Kessler at the Washington Post and Politifact have fact-checked Obama's claim about the number of jobs produced by the Keystone XL pipeline and found his claims false.

Obama told the New York Times "this might create maybe 2,000 jobs during the construction of the pipeline — which might take a year or two..." But Glenn Kessler at the Washington Post says this is less than half the estimate issued by Obama's own State Department. In fact, it appears to be an estimate made by opponents of the pipeline:

because part of the pipeline is complete, the State Department has revised downward its estimate of the construction jobs to 3,900 jobs per year over a one-to-two-year period. That’s still a higher figure than the one generated by opponents.

Incredibly, as Politifact points out, even the anti-oil and gas Sierra Club uses the State Department estimate rather than the one the President cited on their website. Let that sink in a bit. The Sierra Club--which wants an end to all use of coal, oil and natural gas for energy production--is being more honest with the American people than the President.

Back to Kessler, he helpfully notes that the President counted jobs differently when it came to hyping his stimulus spending:

the White House routinely claimed the job gains created by the stimulus by adding up the number of “person-years” — in other words, one person employed per year. That’s how the White House could claim 3 million jobs were saved or created by the stimulus through 2012...Thus, using the White House’s stimulus math, the president should be saying Keystone XL would create as many as 7,800 construction jobs.

The White House refused to justify their low-ball estimates to either Kessler or Politifact. The result was two Pinocchios from the former and a "False" rating from the latter. Between things like this and all the claims made about sequestration, you get the impression this administration is pretty comfortable lying to people.


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