Support for Keystone XL pipeline project hits 70 percent

The White House has yet to embrace the proposed expansion of the Keystone XL pipeline, but the American public is on board.

A new Fox News poll shows support for the project has reached a new high, with 70 percent supporting its construction and 23 percent opposing it. That 70 percent support figure is up from 67 percent a year ago. Other polls at the time showed slightly lower levels of support, though still huge majorities in favor.

The increase appears to be due to a rise in support among Democrats, who now support it with a clear majority — 57 percent.

The issue hasn't been on the radar screen in recent months, but President Obama has suggested in recent weeks that he wants to act on climate change — which could have implications for the Keystone XL project.

The project would channel oil from Canada to refineries in the United States. The Obama administration in January 2012 said it needed more time to evaluate the pipeline's impact.

The State Department last week released a report that gave no environmental reason that the pipeline should not be built — a development that has heartened proponents of the project. Those proponents say the project would create thousands of jobs and lower gasoline prices in the United States.

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.
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