Washington - Congressman John Sullivan, Vice Chairman of the Energy and Power Subcommittee, offered the following statement reacting to media reports that President Obama intends to announce he will expedite the permitting process for the southern portion of the Keystone pipeline during his visit to Cushing on Thursday.
Cushing is home to the world's largest oil storage complex.
"President Obama claiming credit for speeding up the Keystone pipeline is like Al Gore saying he invented the internet – it is claiming credit where credit isn't due. This is clearly an attempt to deflect attention from $4 gas and his failed energy policies, and Oklahomans won't buy it. The southern portion of Keystone XL doesn't cross international lines and doesn't need presidential approval. In fact, this administration has done everything in their power to delay the Keystone process – just last week the President personally lobbied members of Congress to vote against it."
"Simply put, the southern portion of keystone – from Cushing, OK to the Gulf Coast – is being built in spite of the Obama Administration, not because of them. This portion of the pipeline does require numerous permits, but those come from state authorities, army corps of engineers and fish and wildlife services, not the president."
President Obama is scheduled to arrive at Tinker Air Force Base about 9:30 p.m. Wednesday.
State Commerce Secretary Dave Lopez plans to visit with Obama when he travels to the Cushing area Thursday to discuss domestic energy policies.
Check out our special section about the president's visit - Special Section: Obama coming to Okla. - on KJRH.com.