Cross-posted from ThinkProgress Green.
Congressional Republicans are now openly acting as advocates for foreign oil interests, colluding with TransCanada lobbyists to push their tar-sands agenda. House and Senate staff for Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.) and GOP Sens. John Hoeven (N.D.), Dick Lugar (Ind.), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), and others gathered Monday afternoon for a conference call with TransCanada lawyers “to plot out how to push the Obama administration on the Keystone XL pipeline,” Politico reports:
“More or less everyone walked out of the room on the same page backing” a bill from Rep. Lee Terry to give FERC authority over the project instead of the White House and State Department, a Terry spokesman told Politico.
Terry’s bill has been called “bizarre” — the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission “does not oversee oil pipelines’ siting decisions or safety standards.” Furthermore, Terry risks the ire of Nebraskans, who have led opposition to the tar-sands pipeline.
Today, Rep. Ted Poe (R-Texas) is introducing the Keystone for a Secure Tomorrow Act of 2012 to immediately approve the pipeline.
Gov. Mitch Daniels (R-Ind.) is expected to “mention the need to approve the Keystone pipeline when he gives the Republican response” to President Obama’s State of the Union address tonight.