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Some Dems prepared to override Obama's veto

Some Dems prepared to override Obama's veto
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Some Senate Democrats are already saying they will vote to override President Obama's veto of legislation authorizing the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

Sens. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinFive hurdles Democrats face to pass an infrastructure bill Nixed Interior nominee appointed to different department role  Against mounting odds, Biden seeks GOP support for infrastructure plan MORE (W.Va.), Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden tasks Harris on border; news conference today Missouri Senate candidate Eric Greitens tangles with Hugh Hewitt in testy interview The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the National Shooting Sports Foundation - CDC news on gatherings a step toward normality MORE (Mo.), Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampBill Maher blasts removal of journalist at Teen Vogue Centrist Democrats pose major problem for progressives Harrison seen as front-runner to take over DNC at crucial moment MORE (N.D.) and Bob CaseyRobert (Bob) Patrick CaseyDemocrats divided on gun control strategy Senate Democrats call on DHS for details on response to Portland protests Dems' momentum hits quagmire over infrastructure plans MORE (Pa.) will vote to override Obama’s veto, according to aides, and it’s possible that several other Democrats will follow suit.

Don Stewart, spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMcConnell seeks to end feud with Trump Senate GOP signal they won't filibuster debate of hate crimes bill Colin Powell on Afghanistan: 'We've done all we can do' MORE (R-Ky.), said the "Senate will soon vote on an override" of the veto, with the action coming "not later than March the 3rd."

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The vote is certain to fail unless Republicans and Democrats who support the pipeline are able to recruit four more senators to their cause. Sixty-three senators voted for the Keystone bill, including nine Democrats, but 67 votes are needed to overrule a presidential veto.

Still, every Democratic vote to override the veto would be a rebuke of Obama, who needs to avoid major rifts with his party as he enters the final stretch of his presidency.

While Manchin said he plans to back the override, he isn't expecting the effort to be successful.

"I would vote to override it but are we going to have it? I mean we only had nine votes to pass it so what do you think? I don't think that's going to happen," Manchin told reporters on Tuesday.

McCaskill argued that Obama should listen to the State Department’s review of Keystone, which "shows that his oil is coming out of the ground, it’s only a question of how."

"Pipelines are better than barges or trains. That’s common sense, and I will vote to override this veto," McCaskill said.

Heitkamp, who has voted to approve the pipeline multiple times, said Keystone supporters need to fight on.

"We must continue to look for other avenues and also work for more votes and compromises on legislation that would ultimately approve this project," she said.

Sens. Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetSenators press for answers in Space Command move decision Biden announces first slate of diverse judicial nominees American Rescue Plan: Ending child poverty — let's make it permanent MORE (Colo.), Tom CarperThomas (Tom) Richard CarperFive reasons why US faces chronic crisis at border Appeals court agrees to pause lawsuit over Trump-era emissions rule Five things to watch on Biden infrastructure plan MORE (Del.), Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyEverybody wants Joe Manchin Centrist Democrats pose major problem for progressives Biden and Schumer face battles with left if Democrats win big MORE (Ind.), Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden's infrastructure plan triggers definition debate Lawmakers say fixing border crisis is Biden's job Five things to watch on Biden infrastructure plan MORE (Mont.) and Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerA bold fix for US international taxation of corporations Democrats offer competing tax ideas on Biden infrastructure Five ways an obscure Senate ruling could change Washington MORE (Va.) were the other Democrats joining Heitkamp, Manchin, McCaskill and Casey in voting to approve Keystone.

Even if all nine Democrats who voted to approve Keystone in January support overriding Obama's veto, the Senate would still fall short.

Getting a two-thirds majority would be even tougher in the House, with Republicans needing scores of Democrats to buck the president.

If an override fails, it still won't be the end, with proponents saying they will try to attach approval of Keystone to a larger energy package, an infrastructure bill or an appropriations bill.

And at every turn opponents will meet votes with protests, and will press Democrats to sustain the veto.

“The sooner we can start working on sustaining a veto, the better,” said Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.). “What it comes down to is loyalty to president.”