House GOP to Obama: Clock is Ticking on Keystone Pipeline
By Andrew Restuccia
January 4, 2012
House Republicans are putting more pressure on President Obama to make a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline, unveiling a clock that counts the number of days since the president signed legislation requiring a speedy verdict on the project.
Obama signed broad payroll tax cut legislation last month that includes a GOP-backed provision requiring him to make a decision on the pipeline within 60 days.
“Will President Obama choose jobs and energy security for America?” says the countdown clock unveiled Wednesday by Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee. “America is waiting for President Obama's decision.”
The countdown clock marks the latest push by Republicans to pressure Obama to approve the project, which would carry oil sands crude from Alberta, Canada, to refineries on the Gulf Coast.
Republicans and other proponents of the project say it will boost the economy and create jobs. But critics of the pipeline — who also raise concerns about Keystone’s effect on the environment — say those assertions are wildly overstated.
Both the GOP and the White House will spend the next several weeks trying to win the messaging war over the controversial project, as both sides face high political stakes in the fight.
Obama risks backlash from key union supporters if he rejects the project, but faces the ire of environmental groups if he approves it.