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We Need the Keystone XL

Posted Friday, January 27, 2012, at 4:06 PM

Dear Friend,

The rhetoric in Washington and throughout the nation following the State of the Union on Tuesday has been an outcry for bipartisanship. There are many things Republicans and Democrats disagree on, but there is one issue that many of my colleagues from both sides of the aisle can see eye to eye on: the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.

The Keystone XL Pipeline would carry oil from Canada to the Gulf Coast, providing more oil for America's energy needs and employing tens of thousands of people immediately. By rejecting the Keystone, pipeline President Obama turned his back on jobs for unemployed Americans and ignored a way to take advantage of some of America's own energy supplies. President Obama's words in the State of the Union do not match his actions. If he was working hard on bringing jobs to America and creating energy independence, the Keystone pipeline is an answer.

So what is the next step? My colleague, Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.) is urging leadership to pass legislation that would give the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission control over the project instead of the White House and State Department. I am a co-sponsor of Representative Terry's bill, (H.R. 3548, the North American Energy Access Act) and am working with Congressman Terry to see that this legislation is brought to the floor of the House of Representatives for a vote as soon as possible. Under H.R. 3548, President Obama would be cut out of the equation and the fate of this job-creating project would be left to expert individuals not influenced by special interest groups or re-election campaigns. I can assure you, I have not given up on this issue. We need the Keystone XL pipeline so we can get more Americans back to work.


Stephen L. Fincher

Showing comments in chronological order
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-- Posted by jlcslccoker@att.net on Sun, Jan 29, 2012, at 8:30 AM

Encourage other corporations to bring back American jobs like Caterpillar has planned to do.Open The Keystone Pipeline. Time to take act- ion. Talk is cheap.

-- Posted by seahawk1 on Fri, Feb 3, 2012, at 5:49 PM

Let's bear in mind that Keystone's purpose is to transport Canadian sour heavy crude shale extract to Port Arthur Texas(a tax free foreign trade zone) for refining and export. That is not "providing more oil for America's energy needs..." As a matter of fact, increasing oil product exports increases domestic prices by reducing domestic supply.

Objections to the proposed route came from the political leadership of Nebraska, i.e. the Republican Governor and the Republican U.S. Senator. Approving TransCanada's proposal for an alterate route involves an established review process, which a President must observe. So, what will happen if Congressman Fincher's legislation transfers approval authority to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission? FERC will labor under the same obligations to observe legal process, because its decisions are subject to appeals in federal court. Failing that, any decision could be overturned automatically in court. The 20,000 temporary jobs will be important for those who have them, but Transcanada will bring in a lot of their own people from Canada. And it's not buying American pipe from American steel companies. TransCanada has already contracted to import low grade pipe from India.

Developing and approving a new route for Keystone requires more than the two months demanded by Congress. Both TransCanada and the Administration have stated their commitment to work together and expedite that process.

-- Posted by i-think on Wed, Feb 29, 2012, at 9:18 PM

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Congressman Stephen Fincher
Stephen Fincher
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Stephen Fincher is the U.S. Representative for Tennessee's 8th congressional district.
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