Oil lobby, unions team up on Keystone push

 

A prominent lobby group for the oil industry is joining up with six unions to pressure the Senate into voting for approval of the Keystone XL pipeline.

In a letter sent to the entire Senate on Wednesday, labor leaders and the American Petroleum Institute called on lawmakers to allow a binding vote on legislation that would greenlight the oil-sands pipeline.

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"The president’s recent delay to make a final decision on Keystone XL has also once again jeopardized the ability of our construction workers to remain in the middle-class by reducing opportunities for well-paying jobs," said the letter, which was signed by North America's Building Trades Unions, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and the National Association of Manufacturers.

"We are counting on you and your Senate colleagues to work together in a bipartisan fashion to quickly bring S. 2280 to the floor and approve the Keystone XL Pipeline," the letter concludes.

The Laborers' International Union of North America, International Union of Operating Engineers and the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry also signed the letter.

Earlier this month, the Senate attempted to bring a vote to the floor on the pipeline, but it fell short amid partisan bickering over whether it should be a stand-alone vote or attached to another piece of legislation.

The push for a vote comes as green groups are sending a letter of their own to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urging her to publicly oppose Keystone.