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Public Statements

Motions to Instruct Conferees on H.R. 4348, Surface Transportation Extension Act of 2012, Part II

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. DOYLE. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to this motion to instruct.

Like Mr. Barrow and many of my friends on the other side of the aisle, I support building this pipeline in a way that protects the environment and creates good American jobs--but not in the manner that this motion to instruct would have us do.

I've come to the floor many times to talk about the Keystone pipeline. Many times my concern was that we're not using enough American-made steel in this project, that a lot of what we were told initially about the steel worker jobs and the things that would be created just didn't come to materialize. But my biggest concern with this motion to instruct is we're once again talking about a 30-day timeline for approval from an agency, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which has nothing to do with oil pipeline siting and permitting.

We're tasking FERC with the regulation of wholesale electricity. We task them with ensuring reliability, hydropower permitting, and natural gas pipeline siting. FERC doesn't have the authority or the expertise to permit and site oil pipeline at all, and it is unrealistic to expect that they can do it in 30 days. And if FERC doesn't issue a permit in 30 days, it doesn't matter; this motion would allow the permit to be deemed as issued, to build the Keystone XL pipeline even if FERC doesn't approve a permit within 30 days.

A 30-day arbitrary and rushed approval for this pipeline is not worth holding up our entire highway bill conference. The Keystone XL pipeline will be built in due time with appropriate permitting. It will create good-paying jobs and strengthen our relationship with our neighbor Canada. Let's not hold up the highway bill conference that can bring even more good jobs and improved infrastructure that our country so badly needs.

I urge my colleagues to vote "no'' on this motion to instruct.


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