By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
President Barack H. Obama has refused for years to permit America’s energy industries to easily access Canadian oil sands via the Keystone Pipeline. Today the U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution (H.R. 3) that if passed by the Senate would authorize construction of the pipeline without a presidential signature.
Congressman Robert Aderholt (R) from Haleyville said on Facebook, “House Republicans remain committed to implementing policies that help our economy grow and create opportunity for the private sector to create American jobs. H.R. 3 does exactly that. The Keystone XL pipeline is a private-sector infrastructure project that will bring an estimated 20,000 jobs to the United States, add $20 billion to our nation’s economy and provide greater energy security to America.”
U.S. Representative Martha Roby (R) from Montgomery co-sponsored the bill, officially known as H.R. 3, The Northern Route Approval Act. Rep. Roby said, “American families experience the pain of high energy costs every time they fill up the tank or pay the power bill. At a time when energy costs are high and job creation low, now is the time to build this pipeline as part of an ‘all-of-the-above’ energy approach. In addition to lowering costs and creating jobs, approving the Keystone Pipeline would also be a key step towards ensuring American energy independence.”
Congressman Spencer Bachus (R) from Vestavia said, “We have talked for years about reducing our dependence on oil from hostile regimes in the Middle East and this is our opportunity. For the sake of our economy and our national energy security, it is time to get this needed project moving ahead. This oil is going to be produced and sold, and I would rather have consumers in the U.S. realize the benefits than see it sent to China.” Rep. Aderholt said on Facebook, “This is a situation where we have a private-sector company willing to invest $7 billion, that would create thousands of jobs. Instead of jumping at the chance to get our economy moving again, the Administration has kept this project in bureaucratic limbo for over four years. As jobs reports and economic growth in this country continues to be dismal, removing the roadblocks preventing construction of the Keystone XL pipeline is a win-win for America. I am proud to have supported the legislation that passed in the House today and hope to see the Senate act swiftly on this commonsense measure.”
Congresswoman Roby said, “President Obama has had more than 1,700 days to approve the permit for the Keystone Pipeline, yet he continues to delay when some 20,000 jobs hang in the balance. Since the President refuses to show leadership and act, a bi-partisan House majority has stepped up to offer a solution that could will help expand domestic energy production and create thousands of American jobs. It’s difficult to understand how the President can campaign all over the country about job creation, when at the same time he’s standing in the way of a project that could create tens of thousands of jobs.”
The House passed H.R. 3 by a vote of 241-175 which authorizes the full construction of a pipeline that would link oil sands in Canada with refineries in the U.S. The Northern Route Approval Act would pave the way for the privately-financed Keystone Pipeline project by declaring that TransCanada Corporation needs no Presidential permit for the pipeline application they filed on May 4, 2012. H.R. 3 also calls for an expedited judicial review in the inevitable legal challenges from environmental extremist groups. The bill also removes additional regulatory burdens caused by unnecessary environmental regulations.
The Keystone Pipeline project would carry as many as 830,000 barrels of oil per day from Canada and North Dakota to oil refineries on the Gulf Coast.