After House Votes for Pipeline Approval, Will Senate Democrats Buck Obama on Keystone XL?

‘Let’s get one thing straight: this vote is nothing more than an empty act of political theater, because Keystone XL is President Obama’s decision,’ climate activist declares by Deirdre Fulton – As predicted, the U.S. House of Representatives voted Friday to approve the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline, setting the stage for a U.S. Senate showdown next week and a potential presidential veto after that. The vote played out largely along party lines in the House, with 262 members voting in favor of the legislation and 161 voting against. Thirty-one Democrats voted for the bill, which was introduced by Representative Bill Cassidy (R-Louisiana). The Senate is scheduled to vote on its Keystone companion bill on Tuesday. While Republicans were confident they had sufficient support going into Friday’s House vote, they are far less secure in the Senate. Though all 45 Republicans are expected to vote “aye” and at least 13 Democrats...

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As Senate Dem Pushes Air Strikes on Syria, Experts Say ‘No Military Solution’

“You can’t bomb extremism out of existence,” says Middle East expert by Sarah Lazare – Senator Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) announced Tuesday he is planning to introduce a bill that would authorize the president to launch strikes on Syria, despite warnings that an expansion of the ongoing air war on neighboring Iraq would only make ISIS stronger and further embroil the region in violence. Nelson — senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee — revealed his intentions to propose the legislation following the release Tuesday of a video depicting ISIS beheading U.S./Israeli journalist Steven Joel Sotloff, whose execution was preceded by that of U.S. journalist James Foley. The representative of Sotloff’s home state of Florida, Nelson said he will file the still-unspecified legislation as soon as Congress reconvenes next week. The senator directly referenced  the political debate over whether the president has the constitutional authority to levy air strikes without...

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