Washington D.C. – House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) gave the following remarks on the House floor in support of H.R. 3, the Northern Route Approval Act:
So when the President said that sometimes projects take too long to get off the ground? I think he was referring to if it was more than 1,700 days; that is too long. When the President said there is too much red tape, some is important but we can do it faster, I think the President probably meant that 15,000 pages of review that we’ve done for Keystone; that’s probably too much.
“I rise today in support of this bill. Now if you’re like me and you go across the country you want to listen to the American people. The two things they talk about when you tell them you are a Member of Congress is first, ‘where are the jobs?’ The second is they will talk about Washington and say ‘why can’t you work together. Why cant you solve this problem together?’ It’s not always often when we can mesh those two together on the exact same day. But today is the opportunity.
“Last week I watched our President of the United States go to a small business. I love it when he goes to a small business; I was a small business owner. He went to a small business to talk about job creation, what to move America forward? Now I’ll be frank. Lots of times my philosophy is not the same as this President. But I want to work together; especially when we agree.
“So I listened to his words and I listened to them closely because he talked about what was holding back job creation in America. And I quote, the President said, “One of the problems that we had in the past is that sometimes it takes too long to get the projects off the ground. There are all these permits and red tape, and planning, and this and that. And some of it is important to do but we can do it faster.”
“You know what, I agree with these words from President Obama. And I looked for, what could make that change? And you know when he spoke at that small business, it just so happened that the CEO of that small business was there with him. But you know where he was 24 hours before? He was right here in Congress. He was here testifying as that small business on what could get American moving. You know what he talked about? Build the Keystone pipeline. Build it.
“So when the President said that sometimes projects take too long to get off the ground? I think he was referring to if it was more than 1,700 days; that is too long. When the President said there is too much red tape, some is important but we can do it faster, I think the President probably meant that 15,000 pages of review that we’ve done for Keystone; that’s probably too much.
“So there is a unique ability that yes, we can move something that can cerate 20,000 jobs in America today. We can be less reliant on the Middle East for our energy as well. But you know what is more important when you listen to the American people? They say, ‘well why can’t we do this in a bipartisan manner?’ But it will come off this floor in a bipartisan vote. But you question can if come off the Senate? Well the majority of the Senators voted for it; 17 Democrats on the other side as well.
“So I stand today as the Majority Whip saying, I agreed with President Obama’s words. The only thing that is missing is the action.
“Today we will do our job, we will send it to the Senate and it will be the start of a new beginning; to put people before politics and jobs and bipartisanship forward. I yield the opportunity to do it and I yield back.”