WASHINGTON, DC – Delivering the Weekly Republican Address, Rep. Lee Terry (R-NE) says it’s time to build the Keystone XL Pipeline, a project that will help lower energy bills and create tens of thousands of American jobs. Keystone continues to enjoy popular and bipartisan support in the face of resistance from the Obama administration. Rep. Terry is a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee.
NOTE: The Weekly Republican Address is embargoed until 6:00 a.m. ET, Saturday, March 30, 2013. The audio is accessible now, and video of the address will be available to view and download once the embargo is lifted. A full transcript follows.
“Hello, I’m Congressman Lee Terry from the state of Nebraska’s Second District.
“Republicans in Congress are focused on creating jobs and improving the cost of living in America. We’ve held the line against tax increases and passed a balanced budget, and forced the Democratic-run Senate to approve its first budget in four years.
“There’s something else we need to do, and that’s take on the high energy bills many families and small business are up against. This is especially important at this time of year, when the pain at the pump begins to take an even bigger toll on commuters and truckers.
“That’s why I’ve led the efforts in the House to support the Keystone XL Pipeline, a project that would bring more North American energy to the marketplace and put thousands to work. All told, Keystone will create roughly 20,000 new jobs related to the construction of the pipeline. And it will create another 118,000 jobs downstream. Labor leaders in my hometown of Omaha tell me it will create 2,000 jobs here.
“So Keystone is primed to give our economy a shot in the arm and make energy more affordable – and it won’t cost the taxpayers a dime.
“Despite all of that, the Obama administration continues to block Keystone, using every bureaucratic trick and excuse in the book. It’s now been more than 1,600 days since the initial permits were filed for building the pipeline. To put that in perspective, it took the United States a little more than 1,300 days to win World War II, and it took Lewis and Clark about 1,100 days to walk the Louisiana Purchase and back.
“The Keystone XL Pipeline is a no-brainer. It’s passed muster through several environmental reviews. It’s picked up support from a broad, grassroots coalition of unions and employers. Public backing has risen to 70 percent. And just last week, the Democratic-run Senate endorsed Keystone with a filibuster-proof of 62 votes – a bipartisan show of support rarely seen in Washington.
“The people and the Congress have spoken. The experts have weighed in. Now it’s the time to build the Keystone pipeline. No more delays, no more politics. If the president continues to drag his feet, Congress is prepared to act.
“We shouldn’t stop there. There is much more we can do and should do to support our nation of builders and unlock our domestic resources as a way to create jobs, lower the cost of living, and put our nation on a path to energy security.
“Doing all of this isn’t just about the dollars and cents. It’s about coming together to solve longstanding problems to ensure our children will have the same chances, the same hope and freedoms we’ve had.
“These are the blessings we celebrate during the rites of Easter and Passover. It’s a time to unite in prayer and celebration – to renew traditions, lift up our spirits and tell old stories that remind us how trials and suffering can be overcome with courage and resolve. It’s a time for perspective. If we look for opportunities to work together and seize on them – if we choose to build on and not squander past sacrifices – we come that much closer to realizing the promise of a more perfect union and peace for one and all.
“God bless you and your families. And thank you for listening.”