Senators To Vote On Keystone Pipeline
U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu says the Senate could vote next week on legislation that would green light the long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline.
Landrieu said the measure will need 60 votes on the Senate floor to pass and right now, there are commitments from 56 senators who say they'll vote for it.
"We are very close," Landrieu said. "We have 11 democrats and all of the Senate's Republicans, so it's a strong, bipartisan coalition."
It's about time, and it will be good when it happens.
Landrieu said construction of the pipeline will create more than 42,000 jobs across the country, and it will send a signal that North America is an energy powerhouse. She said enough studies have been carried out, and it's time to build.
"The last study was completed by the (U.S.) State Department, and every study that's been conducted leads to 'Yes, it's in the nation's interest,'" Landrieu said.
Landrieu's top challenger in her re-election bid, Baton Rouge Republican Congressman Bill Cassidy, said the federal government should have signed off on this project more than 5 years ago.
"The House has voted seven times to approve Keystone," Cassidy said. "So it's better late than never. It's about time, and it will be good when it happens."
It's possible President Obama will veto the Senate legislation if it reaches his desk because of environmental concerns. Cassidy said the pipeline creates thousands of jobs and brings the U.S. closer to energy independence.
"It will move the ball forward on 20,000 direct jobs that could have been created 5-and-a-half years ago," Cassidy said.