Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, in Washington recently for a summit meeting with President Barack Obama and Mexican leader Felipe Calderon, may well have one question he would still love to ask:
Are Americans that gullible?
Harper won't ask it because he's too much of a diplomat to do so, of course. But we Americans should be looking at the question ourselves.
One topic of discussion at the meeting was the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. It is intended to carry oil from Canada to refineries in the United States, including some along the Gulf Coast.
But earlier this year, President Obama refused to allow construction of the pipeline, despite the clear need the United States has for more oil from a reliable trading partner.
It is the excuse used by the president that should trouble Americans. He insists that, under pressure from Republicans in Congress, he had to make a yes-or-no decision before an acceptable route for the pipeline was found.
That's right: President Obama claims the pipeline is dead because Republicans wouldn't allow his administration to look at different routes for it.
That is nonsense - as Harper and thoughtful Americans surely recognize.
No one has told President Obama that the Department of Energy and other agencies could not explore alternative routes for the pipeline. No one has suggested that he could not change his mind and allow the project, should another route be found.
President Obama appears to have killed the project to appeal to environmental radicals. Are we gullible enough to accept his excuse?