If you’ve been following along for the past few months, you’ve probably noticed that New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D) is wildly dishonest, not terribly bright, or some combination of the two.
During a House Financial Services Committee hearing on Tuesday, AOC took the opportunity to confront Wells Fargo president and CEO Timothy Sloan for the company’s financing of the Keystone XL pipeline, which she accused of “had one leak that leaked 210,000 gallons across South Dakota.”
The Federalist Papers Reports:
— Alexis Goldstein (@alexisgoldstein) March 12, 2019
That would be the Keystone XL pipeline that, er, hasn’t been built yet. The Daily Caller has more:
Ocasio-Cortez probably confused the Keystone XL pipeline with the Keystone pipeline, which has been operating since 2010. Keystone XL is still under construction, but would also bring oil sands from Canada to Nebraska where it would connect to existing pipeline […]
The existing Keystone pipeline, however, was responsible for leaking up to 9,700 barrels in South Dakota in 2017. The initial estimate for the spill was about 5,000 barrels, or 210,000 gallons of oil. Both Keystone and the planned XL line are operated by Canadian pipeline giant TransCanada.
TransCanada said it repaired the pipeline and cleaned-up the spill, Reuters reported in 2018, though the event has been used by environmental activists to gin up opposition to the Keystone XL pipeline.
In fairness, mixing up which pipeline has an “XL” after the same word is hardly the biggest gaffe in the world, but that doesn’t make her broader line of questioning — and her attempt to extract a scalp from Wells-Fargo, any better:
How is this real… AOC thinks Wells Fargo should pay for pipeline spills because they provided financing.
AOC: “Hypothetically, if there was a leak, from the DAP why shouldn’t Wells Fargo pay for the cleanup of it?”
Wells Fargo CEO: “Because we don’t operate the pipeline…” pic.twitter.com/eAQer0uHVt
— Caleb Hull (@CalebJHull) March 12, 2019
AOC: So, hypothetically, if there was a leak from the Dakota Access Pipeline, why shouldn’t WellsFargo pay for the cleanup of it, since it paid for the construction of the pipeline itself?
SLOAN: Because we don’t operate the pipeline. We provide financing to the company that is operating the company.
AOC: Why did Wells Fargo finance this pipeline when it was widely seen to be environmentally unstable?
SLOAN: The reason we were one of the seventeen or nineteen banks that financed that is because our team reviewed the environmental impact and we concluded it was a risk we were willing to take.
AOC also went so far as to try to hold Wells-Fargo responsible for the “caging of children” at the southern border. An understandably-baffled Sloan had to explain that they weren’t involved in the policy (which wasn’t “caging children”), but had in the past lent money to one of the companies that constructed the holding areas employed by ICE (you know, the same holding areas that were perfectly fine during the Obama administration but suddenly became a concentration camp under Trump).
Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) asks Wells Fargo CEO Timothy Sloan: “Why was the bank involved in the caging of children and financing the caging of children to begin with?”
Sloan: “I don’t know how to answer that question because we weren’t.” pic.twitter.com/0ecaOAvvu8
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) March 12, 2019
Ocasio-Cortez couldn’t care less about who’s actually responsible for what; as long as there’s money to go after and a business to demonize, she’s there. We should expect nothing less from the woman who infamously said she cared more about being morally right than factually correct, but has little actual concern for either.