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

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. SCALISE. I thank the gentleman from Kentucky for yielding.

I want to rise in strong support of the gentleman from Georgia's motion to instruct. This is a strong bipartisan motion that has support not only in the Halls of Congress, but also has support amongst the American people as they look at this proposal.

Keystone, our friend in Canada, they have vast oil reserves, and they're going to extract those reserves whether they're used in America or whether they're used in China. So the question is not whether or not Canada is going to go and explore their oil sands, it's whether or not we get the oil from a friend in Canada--1 million barrels a day when it's in operation--or we continue to become more reliant on Middle Eastern oil, oil from countries, in many cases, that use the money that we send--the billions of dollars a day we send to them--against us, against our troops.

We have an opportunity to do many things here. We can help secure America's energy independence by saying that's 1 million barrels a day less that we need to get from Middle Eastern countries who don't like us, we can get it from a friend in Canada. They want to send it to us. And oh, by the way, it's going to create about 20,000 American jobs upfront. There's much more to come. The estimates are even higher long term once the pipeline is in operation.

This shouldn't even be a dilemma. It's not controversial to most people. Most people consider it a no-brainer--20,000 jobs, 1 million barrels a day of oil from a friend in Canada instead of other countries--and yet President Obama has said no. Now, he goes around giving speeches saying he's for all of the above. We've heard it time and time again, he's for all of the above. Maybe he's for all up above, but nothing below. Because if you say ``no'' to the Keystone pipeline, you're not for an all-of-the-above energy.

You just look at the facts. We've got the opportunity to say ``yes'' to something that creates great jobs, and this transportation bill is the perfect place for it because this is infrastructure. We've got pipeline already running all throughout our country.

Even if this amendment passes, Mr. Chairman, there's nothing that says that every State has to have the Keystone pipeline go through it. If there are any environmental issues, each State still has to permit the pipeline if it goes through their State. So each State still has the ability to say, look, we want to make sure the route fits best with our environment. That will happen anyway, even if it's approved.

But if the President rejects Keystone, make no doubt about it, the oil will still be produced in Canada, except it will be sent to China, and the jobs will be sent to China, and the billions of dollars of private

investment--this isn't one of those phony stimulus bills where we print a bunch of money we don't have and borrow it from China. This is actually real investment from private sources, and they want to spend those billions of dollars here in America. They want to create those jobs here in America. They want to help ensure our American energy independence right here at home, and the President keeps saying ``no.''

It's our opportunity to stand up in a bipartisan way and say this is something we all agree upon. Just because some radical environmentalists went and held a big rally over at the White House a few months ago, and literally 3 days later the President said, oh, wait, now I'm against Keystone. It's time for us to stand up and do the right thing--stand up for those American jobs, stand up for billions of dollars in private investment, and stand up for American energy security and say ``yes'' to the Keystone pipeline. I strongly support this motion.


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