tv Senate on Keystone XL Pipeline Veto Override CSPAN March 7, 2015 12:24pm-12:55pm EST
for fifth of the fossil fuels that we have already identified that are in the ground we have to leave it in the ground rather than burning if we are not going to exceed two degrees centigrade in global warming. that means we cannot proceed to build infrastructure design designed to accelerate the distraction -- the extraction of these fossil fuels. and the pipeline is exactly that kind of infrastructure. have no doubt, i love the idea of the jobs and construction. that is why i am a huge supporter of the build america act. the build america act would create hundreds of thousands of construction jobs over the course of a number of years. that is a type of investment in jobs, constructions, and infrastructure that we should make, but we should not be investing in infrastructure that will do profound damage to our planet. that does not honor the moral
responsibility we have in the stewardship of this beautiful blue and green orb that we live on known as planet earth. let's honor our responsibility and let's not override the veto that the president has put on this bill. thank you, mr. president. >> i am here today to discuss the keystone pipeline approval legislation and the president's recent veto as well as our own -- our effort to override the veto. i will be joined by a distinguished colleague from south dakota, also are calling on the other side of the aisle from west virginia will be joining us shortly, as well as the chairman of the energy committee, are calling from alaska. i would like to make a couple of points upfront and then turn to my colleague from south dakota.
what i've got here, and i have shown it before on the senate or -- on the senate floor, is the route that typed -- xl pipeline will take. it will come down through montana where he would pick up domestic crude. often people think of it as moving canadian crude, but it also picks up domestic crude in the balkan region. from north dakota and montana. it takes that oil to refineries throughout the country. so that is the project we are talking about. this chart shows the project itself and it shows what is going to happen if we do not approve it, and you have to understand that this has been going on for over six years. the president has the latest project for six years. if we do not build a pipeline bringing oil to the united states, then canada will build pipelines to the west coast and
that oil will go to china by tank or ship, so it will be refined in china. again, we go through all these different discussions, but the reality of it is it will be produced, and we want to have it here in our country or would we rather see it go to china? if it goes to china, not only does that affect the ability to produce oil in our country because we don't have the structure to produce it safely and cost-effectively, but we also continue to import oil from the middle east. i'll just run through a couple more of these charts and bring us up-to-date with where we are. it's not like we don't have pipelines so when the president takes more than six years to make a decision and is having such a hard time with this pipeline, it is not like we don't have a few pipelines in the country. we have millions of miles of pipelines.
of course, this will be the latest and status -- and greatest state of the art with many safety features that are required as part of the approval process for the pipeline which has been going on for more than six years. the other part i want to make before we go into the latest status is, this is the finding of not 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 reports by the administration. but in fact, the obama administration's state department has sent five environmental impact statements, three draft statement, and to final statements. two final impact statements. here is what the obama's report is after the environmental impacts. no significant environmental impact, according to the u.s. state department environmental impact statements. that is as a result of the xl keystone pipeline. here we are today, after more than six years in the "approval
process" by the administration, and we passed this with 62 votes in the senate and passed in the house by 270 votes, so big bipartisan votes for this legislation. last tuesday, last tuesday, we sent it to the president. we sent it to him in the morning and he vetoed it the same day and had it back to us that afternoon. so that was pretty efficient. we sent it to him in the morning and bank, he has got it back here in the afternoon. his rationale for vetoing the project was that it cut short his review process. it cut short his veto process so he found out he can veto in one day but he is been studying for over six years -- over six years, and he vetoed it because we cut his review process short after more than six years.
subsequent to that, the president was asked by the press, well, mr. president if congress is somehow cutting your process short, what are you going to make a decision? his response to the press, i believe it was last week or early this week, well, he's going to make a decision either in a couple of weeks or maybe in a couple of months, but certainly by the end of his term. my question is this -- where is the process question what process is he talking about? if he delays it for more than six years in a situation where transcanada, the company, has met every single requirement of the law and regulation. and it met regulation and requirements for more than six years. the six states on the route, i will show the to you, have all approve the project. all six states have approved the project. they had six years to do it. and the american people overwhelmingly support this project in poll after poll.
my question is, what process is he talking about? there is no process there. if you go on for six years where congress spent millions of dollars to try to build an $8 billion project that will help us create energy and security with our closest friend and ally canada, what process is he talking about? when asked when he will make a decision, he said, i don't know. maybe a few weeks, maybe a few ones by the end of my time, anyway. well, that is a years. isn't this a country of laws? how would you or anyone else, any company, large or small, anybody feeling that they are compliant with a lot and doing what they are supposed to do, and they do it over and over again, and somebody was elected to office and said, yeah, well, i just don't feel like it. when do we cease to become a country of laws? when do we cease to have a situation where we can rely on
the laws and regulations of this state, whether it be an individual family, community company, or anything else? when we look at a project like this that is a question we have to ask ourselves because it could happen in this situation, can't did happen in any situation? and when do we as a congress step up and say, you know what russian mark we passed the loss. we passed the laws and those laws have to be respected and enforced. isn't that our job? isn't that our obligation? isn't that why the people of this country sent us here? i believe it is. and it is one thing to say well, you know, it is that transcanada company. they do business in canada, they do business here. what if it was you? what if it was your company #what if it was six plus years of your life question what if it was millions of dollars? then, how would you feel about it? remember america is a place
where people as a history have come to do business. because they can count on our laws and they can count on our regulations and the can count on the fact that if they made the investment, they could do business on a certain dependable basis. what happened to that? when we lose that, what happens to our economy? with that, i would like to turn to my good friend from south dakota. the pipeline will run right to this day, creating jobs and millions of dollars of tax revenue. i would like to ask him for his thoughts. >> i appreciate the senator from north dakota and the economic activity, energy independence positive benefits to our national security from the building of this pipeline for many, many months in the united states than it. the most recent development, the frustration in having a president veto a bill that has 60 cosponsors, north of 60 cosponsors of the united senate. this is a bipartisan bill. senator of north dakota has made
-- has worked hard to make it that way. a lot of members on both lines of the aisle support this pipeline. what is striking to me about it is some of the misstatements and the things that have been said recently in the veto message of the president. they said that though washington poll fact checker pointed out that when the president said this is going to bypass the united states and we will not get any benefit from this, not only did they give you 1, 2, 3 he got four pinocchio's from the washington post. what that means is folks, that is a really, really big whopper to suggest there is not going to be any benefit to the united states from this. in fact, they went on to point out in a story that their estimates that 70% of the oil refined would be used in this country. furthermore, as a senator from north dakota pointed out, this is a significant investment who want to do -- for people who want to do business in the united states because of our rules and laws and certainty
that comes with that. the oil a north dakota is -- a lot of american ownership in this. the friend and ally of canada, instead of getting the type quality of oil from a country we don't have a favorable relationship with venezuela, we can get it from canada. and it can come through this country and the suggestion that it will benefit anybody in this country is completely, completely wrong. i know the senator from north dakota has pointed this out before, that to 100,000 barrels of oil a day with but if you're from his state of north dakota and montana. a lot of the oil that is so valued and would take pressure off of the railroads. interestingly enough, he pointed out that it was found by the administration with no significant environmental impact. well, think about this. you are putting this oil on a rail car or truck and the
studies show that that parade 28% to 42% more emissions that shipping in the pipeline. it is going to go some way. it is going to go in a truck rail car pipeline. if he goes on a rail car or truck, 28% to 42% more emissions than doing it in the pipeline. so from an environmental standpoint, it makes all the sense in the world, too. i will say a somebody who a border state to north dakota, we have had our own issues this couple -- this past year with real service. there is a lot of pressure to move oil on the rail, well, if you can move some of that in the pipeline, it takes a lot of pressure off of the rails and freeze that infrastructure, that capacity up, to move agricultural commodities that are important to both of our states. there is a lot of misinformation that has been put out on this particular subject, and i hope at least that we can have
conversations based on a common set of facts. most of the facts we talk about have been things that are put out by the administration themselves. my state of south dakota would be cost by this. the estimate would that it would create $100 million in earning and 3000 to 4000 construction jobs and generate about $20 million in property tax revenue. there is an awful lot of interest in my state with what happens with the economic activity jobs, property tax of it, and what can do to support local governments and law enforcement, and schools and those sorts of things. obviously, not to mention getting us away from the stupendous we have on dependence for foreign and your seat. -- foreign energy. this doesn't bypass the united states. it has positive economic impacts on our country and we should not forget that. we ought to be able to, as we debate this year, and have an opportunity to override, at
least have facts with reality. my calling from west virginia who was here as well with senator from the, they have been working really hard. maybe people come to the right conclusion and help us advance this important project i think the leader -- the senator for his leadership and i would like to say, i know you pointed out the number of pipelines that exist in the country, and i know that you also pointed out the positive impact -- only get this down, gets refined in other parts of the country, and that a lot of this energy is going to be used in the united states so i appreciate the fact that you have made all of those facts abundantly clear and it is unfortunate that we have not
been able to persuade the president, but i still have hopes. mr. president, i would like to rank the great senator from south dakota and turn to our colleague from the senator of west virginia who has been just a champion on this project and other energy projects. somebody who works on energy, gets it, understands job creation, and he understands that we can make this country must stronger if we produce energy here at home versus getting it abroad. i would like to turn to my colleague from the state of west virginia and thank him for his leadership. senator markey: -- senator: i was first brought to understand the keystone project which was under way and trying to get built and i was asked a question what do you think? i looked at it very quickly and i look at how much oil we buy
from other countries around the world the same type of oil we buy about 750,000 barrels a day from venezuela, and i am thinking, i would rather buy from my friends, enemies. the people who take the proceeds and profit from us buying their product and using it against us. i was very clear on that and i think most west virginia and feel the way i do. 40% of this line is already built. 40% of this line is our needles. this is the part that we are talking about that has not been built that we would like to build. in the capacity, we have talked about 12% of that volume of this would be north american. we are moving our oil, producing our oil, buying for my friendliest neighbor and our ally canada, and it makes us more secure it as a nation. i have heard all arguments. oh, my goodness. we cannot do this because it
will come straight down and go out. they make you believe it is going to come out to be taken to another country and we get no benefit at all. well, we had a press conference maybe two or three weeks ago and we had the prime minister of canada. we had the premier, we had everybody there who agreed that that will not happen. you can't anyway because they need us to refine it. they would be subjected to the same rules and regulations as are commerce department puts on oil in america. that no crude will be exported unless we change the law. that prevents that from happening. that is a misnomer. , they say they don't pay that percent. well the 8% is into a spill fund. they have agreed to do that. they said, wait a minute. this will not be built with american steel. yes, it will be. they agree to that. everything we asked for, they agreed. we can even get our site to agree to make sure it will
happen. i trust the canadians. they will do exactly what they said. i would like to put it in no. i'm working on. the politics of what we are dealing with is this -- if we cannot get four more democrats on my site to go with me to repeal the veto that the president has, this is coming back. none of us in this room, and was in this body, does not understand that the reality of politics is it is coming back in the form of an infrastructure bill. a road bill something that we are all going to go for an we will have to spend a lot of time and energy on the same subject. i have said, let's do it now. let's move it on to something only need to move onto which would be something of great interest. i have a hard time relating with some of what people say that the
amount of product we use in this country would not make us more secure. we by 7 million barrels of oil a day. 7 million barrels only buy from other countries, such as saudi arabia venezuela, even russia we buy oil from. again, if you want to make this country more secure, don't buy oil from a country that uses resources against us. last time i checked, they did not use the resources to benefit america. saudi arabia, i am not convinced that they use any of the money to benefit our country or any of these other foreign countries that we buy from, so this is a perfect commonsense solution. also, i think our good friend from south dakota talked about the trains. about the amount of trains, well, i can tell you. in a state that just had a tragedy, thank god we had no loss of life and we didn't have anyone injured by the grace of god, but i can tell you that the
amount of transportation on the rail has increased 3300% since 2009. 3300% more oil is being transported in america by rail so if we can relieve some of that and be safer in doing it and environmentally safer, we should do it. so i have asked my colleagues -- this will come back if it doesn't now, we have a chance to put its event. it makes a lot of common sense. i will say one more thing about jobs. they have talked about jobs. when i was governor we built a lot of infrastructure, roads, bridges, and and i never remember creating one permanent job after i built a bridge. i had a lot of good jobs and paid a lot of good money when constructing and contractors were happy all of the trades people were happy. but we never expected to create a permanent job. their construction jobs. that is what it is.
and people can believe now we are not creating jobs, but this is construction. when it is done, it is done, ok? i do not know why we cannot coming to grips with that. we do it all day long. do we talk about building 20,000 jobs to build this line? i am saying this, to all of my colleagues on my side of the aisle and hopefully your side of the aisle, that we all support something that makes so much sense to the american people and the working people of america and also the security of our nation. i applaud you, i support you, i cosponsor this bill and i feel strongly about it. i hope today is the last time we have to talk about it and i hope we get this veto repealed and move on. with that, i thank you. >> thank our collect from west virginia for his tremendous leadership. if we do not win the battle today, we will win the war.
the thing is, we ought to just pass it on its merits as he explained. let me turn now to the head of the energy committee, someone who truly is committed to and all of the above energy approach and demonstrates that leadership on all of the above approach every day in his body and certainly in her leadership of the energy committee. and that is by she speaks on this issue in a way that really everyone should listen to, whether you think it should be fossil fuel, renewables, this is a senator who has supported all of these and i think she has great credibility. i will turn to my colleague from alaska. senator: i think my friend and colleague for your leadership. -- i think my friend and colleague for your leadership.
it just seems inconceivable that six plus years, 2350 days, since the company seeking to build the xl first submitted its cross border permit application. it is almost inconceivable. i think my calling from west virginia who just spoke, who articulated some of the myths and misconceptions that have been out there. the senator from south dakota and unseated then as well. -- enunciated them as well. when you think about where we are today and the recognition that this veto override that is in front of us, this is bipartisan energy legislation. the first bill that we have sent to the president this year bipartisan, strong support around the country from an
environmental perspective, and energy security perspective, and from a national security perspective. keystone xl pipeline is what we should endorse. and it is wrong and it is shortsighted. that the president has chosen to veto this bipartisan energy initiative. now, we have heard on the floor here all the reasons why this proposal is good and sound and rational. it focuses on this energy infrastructure, but i think it is important to remind colleagues that when we had this bill on the floor in january, we had something we did not have been a long. of time and that was -- we had something that we did not have in a long period of time and that was some amendments that actually pass to become part of the xl keystone pipeline.
in addition to veto in the infrastructure, the president has vetoed a time sensitive provision that will provide regulatory relief to our water heater manufacturer, so that is now off the table. amy told multiple provisions to increase efficiencies of our commercial buildings, that is now off the table. he has vetoed a provision that would improve the energy retrofitting assistance available for our schools, which my colleague from the had endorsed and pushed. that is now not part of what we are taking a. he also vetoed, what many of us viewed as a responsible path forward on the oil spill liability trust fund, and in our statement asserting that climate change was real. we made some progress with the bill and it is all off the table now. we are talking about the infrastructure that goes across the border, but keep in mind folks, we also included things that this body felt was important to advance.
and that has all been vetoed by this president. it was brought to veto this legislation. the senator from south dakota mentioned before panel. test -- mentioned the four pinocchio test. it is important to highlight some of the irony we see with this veto of this legislation coming from this administration. in effect, the president is making a mockery of the executive order to expedite decisions. again, 2350 days since this application has been permitted -- submitted for permit. but there is other irony here. i want to take a brief moment to point this out during last month, the white house released the national security strategy for this country. in the strategy, i quote "the challenges faced by ukrainian puts a spotlight on the need for
expanded energy security that recognizes the collective needs of the united states our alleys and trading partners, as well as the importance of competitive energy markets, therefore, we must promote energy sources, fuels, and routes, as well as encourage indigenous sources of energy supply. greater energy security and independence within the americas is central to these efforts." well, canada is in the americas. it contradicts -- the veto contradicts his own national security policy. the contradicts his own energy policy that he outlines in the council of economic advisers with their economic report, when they say the extent to which the country's economy is exposed to energy supply risk specifically international disruptions that lead to product availability price shocks, or both. the president is contradicting himself at every turn, whether
it is as climate action plan that he has introduced, vetoing his -- this veto contradicts his own climate posse. we've got a pop -- climate policy. we have an opportunity to boost our economy, health our allies increase energy security, to be an environmental leader and to meet on energy. this president's veto denies us that. it is a failure of leadership. i would recommend that all of us on both sides of the aisle come together to override this veto. mr. president, majority leader, president obama has advocated reaffirming the commitment of the united states to its close allies. the president has led us to believe he worked create american jobs and on veto them. of course, signing the keystone bill would have advanced all of those priorities.
but president obama chose deep-pocketed special interests over the middle class with his partisan veto of the keystone jobs bill. it is the kindest thing that puts union workers on edge and i suspect it makes some of our democratic colleagues uncomfortable, to. but here's the good news. our democratic friends do not have to make the same choice the president said. there is a bipartisan jobs coalition right here in the senate that would love to have their support. we are focused on jobs, pro-middle-class. if you're interested in jobs, infrastructure, and saving your party from an extreme mistake, then join her in vote to override a partisan veto. there's no reason to allow powerful and special interest to block the millions of this infrastructure project would pour into our economy or the thousands of american jobs the
keystone would support. your vote for common sense can release this special interests stranglehold and return a little more sanity to washington. there is a lot we can accomplish by working together. with commonsense reform as our guiding principle. i hope you will join the new majority in that effort. because no matter what happens today, this new congress is not going to stop working for good ideas and we are not going to protect the president from them, either. >> mr. president, i would like to think the majority leader and our colleagues on both sides of the aisle for supporting this bipartisan legislation. prime minister of israel was here yesterday speaking to congress. we had an opportunity to declare energy independence. we do not need to rely on oil from the middle east. i asked my colleagues to join with us and vote yes to override