Senate fails to move forward on Keystone bill

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from MSNBC,

The Senate has failed to move forward on the Keystone XL Pipeline Monday evening, extending the battle over the controversial Canadian oil import project that is one of the Republican Party’s top priorities since taking over control of the Senate in January.

The Senate voted 53 – 39, falling short of the 60 vote requirement to pass the critical procedural hurdle.

When the Senate passed a similar procedural motion related to the Keystone bill on January 12th, which also needed 60 votes, 11 Democrats joined 52 Republicans to pass the motion. But fewer Democrats supported the vote this time. Instead they protested the way Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is running the floor and the amendment process.

“Senator McConnell promised Democrats an open amendment process and a full throated debate on the Keystone pipeline, and we are holding him to that promise,” Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, said in a statement. “Trying to muzzle the debate by refusing to allow Democrats even one minute to advocate for their amendment and then simply refusing to hold votes on dozens of other amendments is not a remotely ‘open’ process.”

McConnell complained on the Senate floor, saying he heard Democratic leadership was “pressuring” its members to vote against the motion.

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