Republicans to Act After Obama Refuses to Approve Keystone Jobs Project
But it was just a big pipe dream.
Barack Obama refused to approve the project in 2011 despite the fact that gas prices hit a record high last year under his failed leadership.
Repbublicans are now working on a plan to take the reins of approval from the president.
Congressional Republicans, who are urging President Barack Obama to give a permit to the Canada-to-Texas Keystone XL oil pipeline project, are working on a plan to take the reins of approval from the president should the White House say no.
Senator John Hoeven of North Dakota, a state counting on TransCanada Corp’s pipeline to help move its newfound bounty of shale oil, is drafting contingency legislation that would see Congress green-light the project, an aide told Reuters.
After delaying the $7 billion project past the November 2012 election, Obama was compelled by Congress to decide by February 21 on whether to approve the pipeline that would sharply boost the flow of oil from Canada’s oil sands.
Should Obama reject the pipeline, Senate Republicans would look at a bill that would force the go-ahead for work to begin, said Ryan Bernstein, an energy adviser to Hoeven, citing the powers given to Congress in the Constitution to regulate commerce with foreign nations.
“We believe that express authority in the Constitution gives Congress the ability to approve and move forward on such a project,” Bernstein said in an interview.
The State Department, which has long held authority to oversee permits for cross-border pipelines, did not have immediate comment on the Republican plan on Wednesday.