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HENDERSONVILLE, TENN. – U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn., a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources committee, today said the Obama administration’s decision today to deny a permit for the Keystone XL pipeline will cost thousands of American jobs and deny access to a large supply of North American energy.  The pipeline would take oil from Canada through the U.S. to refineries on the Gulf Coast.  The State Department had previously attempted to delay a decision until 2013.

“Rejecting the Keystone pipeline will cost thousands of American jobs and prevent our country from accessing a large supply of North American energy.  Outside of election year politics, there is no good reason to block this project, especially when we really need the energy and the jobs the pipeline would generate.  I will continue to press the administration to reconsider this decision and find a way to eventually approve the project,” Corker said

Corker cosponsored the North American Energy Security Act to prevent further delay of the pipeline, and in November, when the State Department announced it would delay its decision on the pipeline until 2013, Corker called on Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry to hold a hearing “to assess the full impact of postponement on U.S. industry, energy security, and economic growth.”

In his letter to Chairman Kerry on November 17, 2011, Corker wrote: “With the unemployment rate at 9 percent, I have serious concerns about the impact this deferral may have on job creation. Reports indicate that the pipeline’s construction will create up to 20,000 direct jobs immediately and could create tens of thousands of indirect jobs. Further, it would inhibit U.S. access to 800,000 barrels of Canadian oil daily from a stable and dependable economic partner, reinforcing our dependence on the Middle East and other volatile oil producing countries.”

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