WASHINGTON, April 21 (UPI) -- Mitt Romney vowed to expand domestic energy production in the United States and also clear the way for construction of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline.
Speaking at a Republican National Committee meeting in Arizona, the presumptive GOP presidential candidate said President Obama continued to give the cold shoulder to fossil fuels despite high gasoline prices and his pledge for a comprehensive energy strategy.
"It does not seem like an 'all of the above' energy policy to me," Romney said. "The president does like all of the above. He likes all of the energy sources that come from above the ground. So anything below the ground he doesn't like.
"We all like wind and solar," Romney added. "But we also like those below the ground."
Romney said a major goal would be to give the green light to the controversial Keystone pipeline, which would transport crude from Canadian oil sands to U.S. refineries on the Gulf Coast. "I will build that pipeline if I have to myself," he declared.
The Obama administration rejected the proposed Keystone route through a critical aquifer in Nebraska and then delayed a new environmental review until after the elections.
The Hill said the Republicans have latched on to the Keystone decision as a campaign issue. House Republicans this week inserted a mandate to immediately approve the pipeline into a transportation funding bill.