Senate Strikes Down Bid To Speed Approval Of Keystone Pipeline

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Archive image of oil pipeline being constructed. (credit: RIZA OZEL/AFP/Getty Images)

Archive image of oil pipeline being constructed. (credit: RIZA OZEL/AFP/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — The Democratic-controlled Senate has rejected a Republican bid to speed approval of an oil pipeline from Canada to Texas.

The 56-42 vote Thursday was the latest in a series of partisan skirmishes over the Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry oil derived from tar sands in western Canada to refineries along the Texas Gulf Coast. Sixty votes were needed for approval.

President Barack Obama rejected the proposed $7 billion pipeline in January, citing uncertainty over a yet-to-be-settled route that avoids the environmentally sensitive Sandhills region in Nebraska. Obama said there was not enough time for a fair review before a deadline forced on him by Republicans.

The president urged Americans to support alternative energy sources this week during a press conference at an auto manufacturing plant where hybrid trucks are made.

Pipeline supporters call it an important job creator. Opponents say it would transport “dirty oil” that requires huge amounts of energy to produce.

(TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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