Hoeven Statement on Bipartisan Support By Majority of Senators for Keystone XL Amendment

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven (R-N.D.) today issued the following statement after the Senate voted on an amendment he introduced, along with Senators Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) and David Vitter (R-La.), to approve the Keystone XL pipeline and move forward construction on the project: 

“Our Keystone legislation received strong bipartisan support in the Senate. Although it didn’t receive the 60 votes necessary for passage, 56 senators voted in favor of the bill, including 11 Democrats. With two additional Republican senators unable to vote, we actually have the support of 58 senators—only two votes shy for passage. This shows strong bipartisan support by a majority of senators for the Keystone XL project. 

“In spite of congressional support, the Administration continues to block efforts to move forward on this project. It is disappointing that President Obama personally called senators to urge them to oppose this important amendment, which would enable the Keystone XL pipeline to move forward with all necessary environmental safeguards. 

“This vote provides good momentum for our legislation. We’ll continue working not only in the Senate, but also with our colleagues in the U.S House, where we have a good opportunity to include this amendment in their version of the Highway bill. With a majority of senators already voting in favor of our amendment, it would have strong support when the bill gets to conference committee. 

“After three years of study, it’s time to move forward with the Keystone XL pipeline. This important infrastructure will transport 830,000 barrels of oil per day to U.S. refineries, including 100,000 barrel a day of North Dakota crude. The additional pipeline capacity and gathering systems will take as many as 500 trucks a day off roads in the North Dakota oil patch, which is important for public safety as well as wear and tear on our western highways. This $7 billion, 1,700-mile, high-tech transcontinental pipeline is a big-time private-sector job creator. It’s a shovel-ready project that would reduce our dependence on Middle East oil, and help to lower rising fuel costs.”