Merkley slams Trump move to allow pipelines

 Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., issued a sharply critical statement Tuesday after President Trump signed an executive order the lawmaker said was designed to “ram through” the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines.

“The proposed Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines have inspired unprecedented grassroots opposition, and for good reason: They would turn on the tap to the dirtiest fossil fuels in the world while threatening drinking water,” Merkley said.

“This executive order is a slap in the face to our tribes and to every American who cares about clean water or a livable planet,” he added.

“Instead of using his power to try to ram these damaging pipelines through, Trump should listen to the voices of the millions who have expressed deep concern about the lasting negative impact these projects would have on our nation.

“If President Trump wants to advance infrastructure projects to create jobs — and I certainly believe there are a tremendous number of roads, highways, bridges, levees, and power lines that need to be repaired and improved — I invite him to take a look at the comprehensive infrastructure investment package Senate Democrats released today. The Senate Democrats’ package would create many times more jobs while investing in the infrastructure our communities actually need.”