Republicans are gearing up for another showdown over the Canada-to-Texas Keystone pipeline, pushing a bill that would compel approval of the project after President Obama denied a critical permit.
The Obama administration has not killed the pipeline. Rather, Obama claimed last month that Republicans did not give his administration enough time when they pushed for a permitting decision within 60 days — the president denied that permit, presumably sidelining the issue at the height of campaign season as the company TransCanada scrambles to reapply.
But Republicans, who have assailed Obama’s decision as bad for the economy and bad for energy security, want to get the project back on the rails.
They plan to make an end run around the State Department, which typically has jurisdiction over cross-border permits, and are teeing up a committee vote for Tuesday on a bill that would do just that.
“It’s time for Congress to take this decision out of the president’s hands and take the politics out of a commonsense pipeline that will bring economic and energy security,” Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said in a statement.
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