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Hillary Clinton Opposes Keystone Pipeline

Clinton announced her opposition to the pipeline just as Pope Francis was touching down in the District of Columbia. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Hillary Rodham Clinton announced her opposition to the Keystone XL pipeline at an Iowa town hall Tuesday, citing climate change.  

Clinton also seemed to ding President Barack Obama's administration for taking so long to make a decision; the State Department she used to head is in charge of the review, and Clinton said she thought they would have issued a decision by now and she could then say whether she agrees with it. But after initially saying she would announce her position after she's elected , Clinton has now changed her tune.  

"I think it is imperative that we look at the Keystone pipeline as what I believe it is: A distraction from the important work we have to do to combat climate change, and, unfortunately from my perspective, one that interferes with our ability to move forward to deal with all the other issues. Therefore, I oppose it. And I oppose it because I don't think it's in the best interests of what we need to do to combat climate change."  

Clinton's decision to take a position comes after plummeting in the polls, with liberals flocking to Sen. Bernard Sanders of Vermont — who has strongly opposed the pipeline and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, another issue which Clinton has been ducking.  

Her stance on the issue was also made public just as Pope Francis, who has advocated for policy to address climate change, was greeted by Obama after making his landing outside Washington, D.C.  

It'll be interesting at this point whether the White House continues to drag out the issue as it has for years. If past is prologue, you can expect Press Secretary Josh Earnest to continue to refer all questions to the State Department, with no real movement expected anytime soon. See photos, follies, HOH Hits and Misses and more at Roll Call's new video site. Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call in your inbox or on your iPhone.