The state's Republican leaders, however, had a different reaction.
Gov. Mary Fallin praised the president for what he said to support domestic oil production. But she said the administration's policies over the past three years have not supported that message.
“The fact of the matter is President Barack Obama's rhetoric is matched with a policy record that is aggressively anti-energy and continues to stifle economic growth in Oklahoma and throughout the nation,” Fallin said in a statement Thursday. “The president urgently needs to re-examine his policies, not deliver more speeches taking credit for the accomplishments of others.”
U.S. Rep. Frank Lucas, R-Cheyenne, who represents Cushing, praised the president for visiting the state and for his discussion on domestic energy. But he was not impressed with the content of Obama's message.
“The president announced that he will expedite permits to build a portion of the Keystone XL Pipeline from Cushing to the Texas Gulf Coast,” Lucas said. “While this sounds encouraging, his approval of this leg of the project is not required. In fact, the Army Corps of Engineers hands out around 90,000 similar permits each year. The president is trying to take credit for a project he has actually rejected twice, and I believe his trip is nothing more than a campaign stop.”
‘A lot of tangible good' in Obama's remarks
Former state Treasurer Scott Meacham, however, said the president's endorse
“I think obviously there are things this administration can do to make things move more quickly,” said Meacham, who was in attendance for the speech. “One of the holdups now is that they have to go through some Army Corps of Engineers property, and that is going slowly. The president has the ability to expedite that. I think there's a lot of tangible good in what the president did today.”