Thursday, April 19, 2012

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House approves transportation extension bill with Keystone

On Wednesday House Republicans approved a second 90-day federal transportation funding extension, which allows highway and transit projects to continue through September and includes language approving the controversial Keystone Pipeline.

President Obama has threatened to veto the bill due to the Keystone provision, asserting Republicans are trying to make an end run around routine procedures for assessing cross-border pipelines. The White House statement regarding the veto also noted the exact pathway of the pipeline has not yet been determined.

The bill is technically being considered in order to extend federal funding for transportation infrastructure projects through September 2012. According to the Huffington Post, the legislation’s primary goal is to set up a situation in which the House can formally debate with the Senate about a comprehensive transportation bill, even though it could not garner the votes to pass its own Republican-authored, long-term transportation bill.

According to the Huffington Post, this is a way for House Republicans, who refuse to consider the $109 billion bipartisan bill passed by the Senate, to prompt a formal legislative session without passing its own bill.

- Huffington Post

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