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Obama has had time to make the right decision
It’s time for President Obama to make a decision on the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline. He has delayed this decision long enough (“House passes GOP bill to speed pipeline approval,” May 22). Individuals opposed to the pipeline cite the fact that there could be serious environmental repercussions, but U.S. State Department research disputes that. The route would make importing oil more accessible because instead of coming from overseas, it would be piped in from Canada, a reliable trading partner of the United States. This is a great business opportunity that cannot be ignored any longer. America has a high demand for oil, and the Keystone XL pipeline extension can most definitely help meet that demand.
SAM HLYWKA, Plymouth
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Imagine looking out your window and seeing thick, black oil gushing out of the ground toward your house. The next thing you know, you’re being evacuated by emergency responders. Again and again, this nightmare is becoming a reality for Americans, as our back yards turn into ground zero for toxic oil spills.
In March, when Exxon Mobil’s Pegasus pipeline ruptured in Arkansas and flooded a quiet suburban neighborhood with 80,000 gallons of dirty tar-sands oil and toxic petrochemicals, 22 families were evacuated. They have not been allowed to return. This month, that same pipeline also leaked into a resident’s yard in southeastern Missouri. President Obama must reject the proposed Keystone XL tar-sands pipeline, which would put the health of millions of Americans at risk.
MARY THERESA DOWNING, Shoreview
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Legislative indifference to the least among us
By virtually all measures, the middle class, upper middle class and top 20 percent income levels are doing well-to-excellent again. Yet our Legislature, and many of us by our silence, again failed to increase the minimum wage for the “least among us” who are still struggling (“Amid a rising tide, minimum wage hike bogs down in politics,” May 22). Salary increases for the Legislature as a ballot issue? I hope the majority of us will vote accordingly.
DON ROBINSON, Inver Grove Heights
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Lots of traffic cones, but never a crew on site
For several months there has been phantom road construction on West Lake Street between Lake Calhoun and St. Louis Park. Traffic lanes are continually closed, but there are no visible signs of construction. Recently it took 20 minutes to drive half a mile. Cones were in place, creating merging lanes, but no construction workers, vehicles or road work were visible.
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.