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Cindy Schild's remarks at press briefing teleconference on Keystone XL Senate Action and Ads

As prepared for delivery

Press briefing teleconference on Keystone XL Senate Action and Ads
Cindy Schild, senior refining and oil sands issues manager
May 5, 2014

Opening statement:

Good morning, everyone. Thanks for calling in.

After almost six years of nothing but excuses and delays from the White House, it’s time for congressional action on Keystone XL. By voting for Keystone, senators can show they stand with the American people on the side of jobs, economic growth and enhanced energy and national security. A vote for the bipartisan bill introduced by Senators Hoeven and Landrieu is also a vote against Washington gridlock and game-playing. After five exhaustive studies confirming no significant environmental impacts, the Obama administration’s announcement that it needs more time to make a decision is a joke. Unfortunately, it’s a joke at the expense of the American people – 70 percent of whom want the pipeline to be built.

The latest polling also shows that overwhelming majorities of American voters agree that Keystone will be a boon to our national security and energy security, and 68 percent report they would be more likely to support a candidate who supports approving Keystone XL – including 60 percent of Democrats.

Senators need to understand that moving forward with Keystone is not only in the national interest but also serves their political interests. We intend to drive that point home to key members of the Senate with a new campaign. The campaign will include new TV, radio and online ads, launched last week in Colorado, Delaware, Minnesota, New Mexico and South Dakota, which urge senators to put special interest politics aside and vote in America’s national interest to approve Keystone XL. And it will include mobilizing the millions of API grassroots activists and voters in the target states to contact their Senator and urge them to support Keystone.

The White House decision to side with a small group of extremists led by a billionaire does not mean ordinary Americans have to miss out on the 42,000 jobs and billions in economic growth promised by Keystone. The Senate can approve Keystone today and make those much-needed jobs a reality for construction workers still struggling with high unemployment and an American middle class that is losing ground in income. With strong support from the labor community, vast majorities of voters, major editorial boards across the nation and bipartisan majorities in both houses of Congress, there is no excuse to delay approval any further. It’s up to the Senate to show the American people that political leadership and progress in service to our national interest are still possible in Washington.

Thank you. Now I’d be happy to take your questions.