Reporting from Midland, South Dakota, The Washington Examiner interviewed residents regarding President Biden’s killing of the Keystone XL pipeline.  One such resident, Laurie Cox, shared how her business — and the community of workers she has grown to love — were torn apart by Biden’s executive order: 

For Cox, the owner of the two-story Stroppel Hotel in Midland, South Dakota, news of a shutdown also meant her business would take a major hit. “I had a real gut-sinking feeling and was watching little snips of the news and Facebook to see what was going to happen after the inauguration,” she told the Washington Examiner. A few hours later, when news broke that Biden had revoked the pipeline’s presidential permit, Cox’s fear came into focus. “It hit me like a ton of bricks,” she said. “I was in shock for three days.” 

Other residents see this order as a sign of more harmful policies to come. Trudy Flesner, the owner of a local stop, fears that politicians are too out of touch to understand the consequences of these type of decisions. 

Flesner blames an anti-Trump movement for the cancellation of the XL pipeline and told the Washington Examiner she believes Biden killed the project as political payback. “Anything Trump has done, [Biden] wants to undo,” she said. “They are totally turning the tables on us.” Flesner fears the deepening beltway divide in Washington will continue to take a toll on South Dakotans and said “clueless” politicians are playing with people’s lives. 

While many residents are disheartened by the president’s actions, some, like Phillip Mayor Michael Vetter, do not believe this is the end of the pipeline.

“I’m quite certain this project is on pause, not stop,” Vetter said. “It has dragged out for several years. Each time beginning and stopping on the whims of individual presidents or judges. And each time, thousands of American jobs hang in the balance. A decision of finality is needed, one way or the other.”

If you would like to read the rest of this investigative report, the piece is available here.