Donald Trump Finally Admits He Wants to Build the DAPL Pipeline

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This should surprise no one:

For the first time, Donald Trump has said he supports finishing construction of the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline….The company behind the pipeline, Energy Transfer Partners, had donated $100,000 to a Trump Victory Fund before the election in the hopes that he’d greenlight it.

….There’s also a seedy financial twist here: Last week, disclosure forms suggested that Trump himself had as much as $300,000 personally invested in the project. That explains why his transition team had to clarify that Trump’s support “has nothing to do with his personal investments and everything to do with promoting policies that benefit all Americans.”

This is a win-win-win-win for Trump:

  • It’s a project that provides a bunch of blue-collar jobs.
  • He gets to come out against a Native American tribe and its whining about “sacred lands,” something that his base of real Americans will surely appreciate.1
  • A big donor gets what it wants.
  • And Donald gets a little cut of the action for himself.

What’s not to like? The only surprising thing is that it took Trump this long. I wonder why it didn’t become a staple of his campaign speech months ago?

MoJo has had lots of coverage of this, so I haven’t spent too much time on it. But there is one thing I’m curious about. There’s already a gas pipeline called the Northern Border Pipeline that crosses the Missouri River at the site of the DAPL project. That’s one of the reasons the DAPL folks want to build there, and I assume it also figures into the Army Corps of Engineers’ thinking. If they approved the gas pipeline decades ago, what justification do they have for not approving a second pipeline in the same place? I only bring this up because I almost never see it mentioned in coverage of the DAPL protests. But surely this has some impact on what the Corps can do legally?

1Please note sarcastic tone here.

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Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

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