GOP claims victory on Keystone XL

Feb. 17, 2012 at 7:37 AM
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WASHINGTON, Feb. 17 (UPI) -- "Tens of thousands of jobs" will come from Keystone XL now that a bill passed through the U.S. House of Representatives, a Republican leader said.

The Republican-led House passed a measure that strips U.S. President Barack Obama of the authority to approve the $7 billion pipeline and instead gives the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission about a month to make a decision on the pipeline.

U.S. Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said the measure forces the administration's hands on the project for the benefit of the economy and energy security.

"Keystone XL is a true shovel-ready project that will create tens of thousands of jobs without costing taxpayers a dime," he said in a statement.

Rep. Ed Markey, D-Mass., ranking member of the House Committee, said the measure "makes it clear that nothing can stop the Republican oil company gravy train from chugging along."

Democrats failed to get a measure into the bill ensuring Keystone XL pipeline was designated for U.S. markets.

The U.S. Senate, controlled by Democrats, is considering similar legislation that doesn't include the Keystone XL pipeline.

Obama rejected the permit for Keystone XL submitted by TransCanada because an "arbitrary" deadline imposed by Republicans didn't give the administration ample time to review the project's route.

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