Jan 9, 2015

We Shouldn’t Be Debating Keystone, We Should Be Building It

Washington, D.C. – House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) spoke on the House floor in support of H.R. 3, the Keystone XL Pipeline Act, which would finally approve the Keystone XL pipeline that the Obama Administration has delayed for so long.

McCarthy’s full remarks are below, or watch them online here.

“Mr. Speaker, as we stand on the floor debating a bill to approve the Keystone Pipeline, we all need to admit: we shouldn’t be doing this. 

“We should not have to be here today – 2,303 days after the application for Keystone was first submitted to the State Department. We shouldn’t be debating it, we should be building it.

“For years, approval has been stuck in Senate. Well, now the Senate is open. The Senate is changed. It moved through Committee. Mr. Speaker, for the longest time, the President hid behind the lengthy and delayed review process, saying he wanted to wait to make a decision. He said he was waiting because of environmental and legal considerations.

“But Keystone won’t harm the environment. It will help protect it. The people know that. Mr. Speaker, the President knows that. Mr. Speaker, the President, before we even started the debate today, has submitted a threat of a veto.

“I take these serious as a Majority Leader. So I wanted to read it. Mr. Speaker, it says one of the rationales why the President wants to veto is because this bill also authorizes the project ‘despite uncertainty due to ongoing litigation in Nebraska.’

“Well, hallelujah! We have good news for the President, Mr. Speaker. The Nebraska Supreme Court solved that problem for him today. 

“So we should move forward just as we have done before on a bipartisan basis. Why? Because 42,000 jobs. Those are American jobs in an economy continuing to move forward. 

“Rest assured, the oil in Canada will be produced. The question before us today, will that oil move down through America, refined in American refineries built by American women and men, or will it go to a whole ‘nother continent?

“We take up many issues here on this floor. But we have to look to the future. And we have to build for a future and a strong future. I want North America to be energy independent. We all know the strength of that. I want an environmentally-sound way to do it. Today does it. 

“I listen to the President’s concerns, Mr. Speaker. We’ve had 2,303 days. We’ve studied it, Mr. Speaker. Our departments have studied it. They’ve come back and said environmentally, we’re safe. There was a legal concern. Well the [Nebraska] Supreme Court dealt with that. So today we can join together, just as we’ve done before in a bipartisan manner and pass this bill. A new change in the Senate with an open process, pass it there, and go to the desk and be signed so 42,000 Americans can get back to work. I yield back.”

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