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Mitch M.
Republican KY

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  • Keystone XL Pipeline

    by Senator Mitch McConnell

    Posted on 2015-01-13

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    McCONNELL. Mr. President, Democrats and Republicans cooperated last night to bring the Keystone Pipeline another step closer to construction. Thanks to that bipartisan cloture vote, the Senate can finally begin an open floor debate on this committee-vetted and approved legislation.

    It is a debate many of us have actually been looking forward to--and not just because of the substance of what we are considering. But we have also been waiting a long time to have a debate where individual Senators actually matter again, which is why earlier I suggested that our colleagues on the other side of the aisle allow us to get on the bill and let us offer amendments. This is going to be an open process, but as I indicated, not an open-ended process.

    This is a debate where Senators can offer amendments and have them considered by the Senators. It is a debate where Senators can make the voices of their constituents heard. That is just the kind of serious legislating many of us have been waiting a long time for, and the fact that we are finally seeing it today is a direct consequence of our constituents' calls for a functioning Congress. It is the latest example of the new Republican majority putting Congress back to work.

    Getting Congress back to work means working to pass legislation that is good for jobs and for the middle class, and that is why we are focused on getting measures such as the bipartisan infrastructure bill over to the President's desk.

    Even though he may not sign it--and we all know that he may not sign everything we pass--we are getting the Congress out of the business of protecting the President from good ideas. That is our commitment to the American people.

    When it comes to the bipartisan Keystone bill, it is hard to see a serious reason why President Obama would [[Page S160]] veto these jobs anyway. The Nebraska Supreme Court just cleared away the last pretense many of us could imagine. So we hope President Obama will listen to the American people, and we hope in the end, after due consideration, he will decide to sign it. But, no matter, we will not be dissuaded from our path of working for the middle class. The new Republican Congress is not going to stop working for more jobs and more opportunity.

    Let's get the debate started. Let's see what Members of both parties can accomplish by actually working together, and let's continue trying to pass as many good ideas as we can, starting with this bipartisan jobs and infrastructure bill.

    I yield the floor.


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