Colorado governor mum on Keystone

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) won't take a position on the controversial Keystone XL pipeline because he doesn't want to "piss off" people in Washington, D.C.

“I’ve avoided taking a position [on the Keystone pipeline] because it’s just going to piss off a lot of people in Washington that I don’t need to piss off, and my opinion is not going to change anybody’s opinion there,” Hickenlooper said during a panel discussion at the Rocky Mountain Energy Summit on Wednesday, according to The Durango Herald.

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Keystone XL has remained a touchy subject for Democrats in tight reelection races this year as they seek to rally the environmental base but distance themselves from some of the administration's climate policies.

The Herald first reported Hickenlooper's comment on Twitter, setting off a flurry of responses from opponents and advocates of the pipeline, which would carry crude oil from Alberta to Gulf refineries in the U.S.

Hickenlooper's Republican challenger, former Rep. Bob Beauprez, accused the governor of a lack of leadership.

Beauprez said Hickenlooper is "far too concerned with what other people think" in a statement, the Herald reported.