VIDEO / OPINION: Rep. Bill Johnson and the Wall Street Journal on Keystone XL

March 27, 2013

Last week, 62 Senators, including 17 Democrats, voted to approve the Keystone XL pipeline, signaling growing momentum in favor of the pipeline’s construction. This strong bipartisan, filibuster-proof endorsement demonstrates growing political and public support for the pipeline, which will bring thousands of jobs and greater energy security to America.

This morning, Energy and Commerce Committee member Rep. Bill Johnson (R-OH) appeared on Fox News to discuss the president’s continued delay of the pipeline, stating, “Now that the Senate has approved it, the only person that is standing in the way is the President of the United States and I’m hoping he sees the reason to go forward.” He continued, “There’s no reason why this project should not go forward. It’s the right thing to do for America’s energy independence and security.”

 

Additionally, the Wall Street Journal editorial board today highlighted the Senate vote to renew their call for the president’s approval of the pipeline, arguing, “The vote reflects the growing bipartisan consensus that a private investment creating tens of thousands of jobs trumps the scare tactics of environmentalists.”

The Keystone Converts
Seventeen Senate Democrats vote for the pipeline. Mr. Obama?
March 26, 2013

An evolving political consensus persuaded President Obama to come out for same-sex marriage last year. Here's hoping the shifting political tides will also inspire a personal evolution on the Keystone XL pipeline.

Last week 17 Senate Democrats voted with all 45 Republicans for a budget amendment supporting the TransCanada pipeline, which would transport crude from the Alberta oil sands to Gulf Coast refineries (oil from North Dakota's Bakken Shale would hop along for a ride). A similar measure last year garnered support from 11 Democrats but fell short of the 60 votes to overcome a filibuster. …

Four government environmental impact statements in the last five years have concluded that the 1,700-mile pipeline would present no significant harm to the environment. The Alberta oil sands produce a mere 0.01% of the world's carbon emissions, and the crude will find its way to foreign markets one way or another. If not via pipeline, then by tanker or rail, whose emissions could exceed Keystone's.

The Senate vote is symbolic since the budget outline lacks the force of law. Still, the vote reflects the growing bipartisan consensus that a private investment creating tens of thousands of jobs trumps the scare tactics of environmentalists. The politician out of the mainstream here is Mr. Obama.

Read the full editorial online here.

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