Is Virginia Governor Race a ‘Referendum on Pipelines’?

Will Virginia in the south become what New York is in the north: a block to Marcellus/Utica gas leaving the region? Perhaps. At least, that’s what radical environmentalists are hoping is what happens. On June 13 Virginia will hold a primary. We recently wrote about its importance (see Fate of 2 Important Pipelines May Rest in Virginia Governor Race). Former Congressman Tom Perriello (far-left Democrat) says he’ll block both the $5 billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline and the $3.5 billion Mountain Valley Pipeline if he wins the primary and the general election. He may well win it. Antis are positioning this primary and the election as “a referendum on pipelines.” The brutal truth is that most people in the Old Dominion could care less about pipelines. It is only a small cadre of gentry-class horse farmers and radical anti-fossil fuelers who oppose the pipeline projects. But if you read local news, you wouldn’t know that. We’d like to say, “Hey, it doesn’t matter who wins, the law is the law and a governor can’t stop a federal pipeline project.” But then, we’re from New York where that is exactly what has happened! At least so far. Both the Constitution Pipeline (Williams) and the Northern Access Pipeline (National Fuel Gas Company) have been blocked by Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo for political reasons. Both pipelines have taken the state’s Dept. of Environmental Conservation to court, where it’s quite possible, even likely, the state will lose. However, nothing is 100% certain–and because of Cuomo’s actions, both pipelines are now years delayed. Our concern is that a major delay may happen in Virginia too, if the state elects someone like Perriello…

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