The United States Senate has approved construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, but not with enough votes to overturn an expected presidential veto.
The Senate has followed the House in approving construction of the oil pipeline that would run through Montana, South Dakota, and Nebraska.
Sen. Deb Fischer says she understands the 62-to-36 vote falls short of the 67 needed to override the veto promised by President Barack Obama.
“You know, the president came out in the State of the Union and in the press threatening a lot of vetoes,” Fischer tells Nebraska reporters during a conference call. “I made this comment before, to say you’re going to veto a bill that you don’t even know what form it’s going to be in when it gets to your desk? We don’t do that in Nebraska.”
The bill differs slightly from the House version. If the two chambers reach agreement on a final version, it goes to the president.
TransCanada proposes building the 840-mile oil pipeline from western Canada to Steele City, Nebraska, which would allow it to hook up with the southern portion of the pipeline which is now carrying crude oil to refineries along the Gulf Coast in Texas.
Obama has said all the federal environmental reviews have not been completed.
TransCanada needs permission from the president to cross the Canadian-United States border.
Fischer says the threat by President Obama to veto the measure doesn’t set the tone of cooperation needed in Washington.
“It’s important to be able to have a working relationship,” Fischer says. “I certainly will be open to that if the president wants to reach out, if we can work together on some issues. That’s what the American people expect us to do.”