WASHINGTON – Congressman Jeb Hensarling (TX-05), a leading conservative and chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, issued the following statement after the House of Representatives passed the Northern Route Approval Act (H.R. 3):
“I believe America should work to become energy independent of all foreign sources. An important step towards that independence is to become North American independent. Approving the northern segment of the Keystone XL pipeline will allow us to increase our ability to derive energy from our neighbor to the north as opposed to nations like Saudi Arabia or Indonesia where uncertainty is always a factor. Furthermore, the full implementation of the Keystone XL pipeline is expected to create 20,000 jobs here in America at a time when millions of Americans are unemployed and underemployed.
“Unfortunately, The Obama Administration has repeatedly dragged its feet when it comes to opening doors to new energy sources for the American people. In other words, America’s increased energy boom is not happening because of the Obama Administration – it’s happening in spite of it.
“Despite the fact that the Keystone XL pipeline has undergone extensive environmental studies by the federal government over the past four and half years – all of which have come back favorable – President Obama still refuses to grant the approval needed for construction of the pipeline to begin. Even if President Obama did approve the Keystone XL pipeline, it could be further delayed through frivolous litigation and other stalling measures. Our nation’s economic and security can’t let this important jobs and energy project continue to languish. That’s why the House of Representatives passed the Northern Route Approval Act (H.R. 3), which eliminates the need for a Presidential Permit, limits litigation that could delay the project, and addresses all other necessary federal permits for the Keystone XL pipeline. Similar legislation was necessary in 1973 to allow construction of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline to move forward.”