November 24, 2014

U.S. Senate Comes Within One Vote Of Passing Keystone Approval

As a new poll revealed 60 percent of Americans support approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline, the U.S. Senate last week considered a bill that would bypass the White House and approve completion of the project. Supporters of the bill, including Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) who still faces a tough December runoff in her reelection campaign, came just one vote short and failed to gain the 60 votes necessary to overcome a Senate filibuster. (See how your senators voted here.) 

While the vote means the measure is dead for this year, Republicans have made clear they plan to quickly reintroduce the legislation when the new 114th Congress convenes in January. According to National Journal, after several Democrats switched their position to favor approval of the pipeline, Republicans could have as many as 67 votes in the U.S. Senate for passage—enough to overcome a Democratic filibuster and to overcome a potential veto from President Barack Obama. 

A veto is not certain, however. The New York Times and Reuters speculate the president could opt to support the Keystone bill if Republicans agree to pass something from his agenda.