There is now a new point person for the Obama administration but what everyone is talking about is their previous work as a lobbyist to promote the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.
According to information from the Center for Responsive Politics, it will be Marty Paone, formerly of the Prime Policy Group, who will be joining the Obama administration.
Reuters said that Marty Paone, was hired by the White House last week to be the deputy assistant for legislative affairs where he will be responsible for working with the Senate on White House legislative priorities, but he will be excluded from issues related to the pipeline.
The Keystone XL Pipeline has been a highly controversial issue within American politics for many years with still no decision on the final outcome of the plans being made.
The pipeline has become a massive political issue with neither side of the debate bending to form a consensus on the issue making the appointment of Marty Paone potentially difficult as it could be said that he will now have the opportunity to influence decisions at the very highest levels.
On one side of the fence we have the environmental groups who claim that stopping the $8 billion pipeline would curb development of Canada’s oilsands, reducing climate-changing carbon emissions.
On the other side of the debate there are the Republicans and unions that represent construction workers say the project would create jobs and is a safer way to move oil than by train.
It is widely anticipated that when the Republicans take control of both houses in January that they will be working hard to push through their plans for the pipeline.
According to Reuters, ethics guidelines prohibit executive agencies from hiring anyone who has lobbied the agency in the past two years, which Paone has done at the Executive Office of the President, said a memorandum by the Counsel to the President.
The White House waived that restriction, citing “public interest” as the reason for Paone’s hiring.