WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The Republican Party remains committed to building the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada to the United States even after President Barack Obama rejected it, US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement on Friday.
"The question still remains not if, but when Keystone will be built," McConnell stated. "Republicans have no intention of giving up on common-sense jobs ideas like Keystone."
Obama, rejected the pipeline on environmental grounds and also because the United States is producing a record amount of oil while oil prices have remained low.
"I wish I were surprised by the President’s decision to reject this jobs and infrastructure project… tens of thousands of Americans… could have benefited from Keystone’s good jobs," McConnell stated.
New House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan said Obama was defying US public opinion by rejecting Keystone and also straining relations with Canada, the biggest US trading partner.
"This decision isn’t surprising, but it is sickening. By rejecting this pipeline, the president is rejecting tens of thousands of good-paying jobs. He is rejecting our largest trading partner and energy supplier. He is rejecting the will of the American people and a bipartisan majority of the Congress," Ryan said.
The Keystone XL pipeline was rejected only weeks before the international climate change summit in Paris, where the United States is expected to lead other nations in reducing dependence on fossil fuels.