WASHINGTON, D.C.--Senator John Thune today criticized President Barack Obama's politically-motivated decision to veto the Keystone XL pipeline, a $7 billion project expected to create over 20,000 direct jobs.
"In rejecting the job-creating Keystone XL pipeline, President Obama today chose to try and save his own job by pandering to his anti-pipeline environmental extremist voting bloc, over creating jobs for thousands of Americans," said Thune. "With over 13 million unemployed Americans desperately seeking a job, it is unfathomable that the president would veto the creation of over 20,000 middle-class jobs.
"Congress should not accept the president's decision to put politics over job creation and should instead use all resources available to ensure that the Keystone XL project moves forward to put Americans back to work and reduce our nation's dependence on oil from the Middle East."
Since President Obama took office in January of 2009, gasoline prices have increased 83 percent from $1.85 per gallon to $3.39 per gallon. Gasoline prices set a record high in 2011 and are projected to increase even more in 2012.
South Dakota's economy would directly benefit from the pipeline. Keystone XL is expected to produce increased personal income by $319 million and create hundreds of construction jobs in South Dakota. Further, it is estimated that once the pipeline is operational, South Dakota counties and local governments could receive over $600 million in additional property tax revenue during the operating life of the pipeline. A similar pipeline already extends from Canada to the U.S. and the Keystone XL pipeline is already the most exhaustively reviewed pipeline in the nation's history.