Mar 18, 2021 - Politics & Policy

States sue Biden in effort to salvage Keystone XL pipeline

President Joe Biden speaks during a virtual meeting with Irish Prime Minister (Taoiseach) Micheal Martin in the Oval Office of the White House on March 17

President Biden at the White House on Wednesday. Photo: Erin Scott-Pool/Getty Images

21 states filed a lawsuit against President Biden on Wednesday over his executive order to rescind permits for the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

Driving the news: The suit, filed in the U.S. District Court in Texas, aims to overturn Biden's decision, arguing that he overstepped his authority by ordering a cross-border permit for the Canada-U.S. pipeline to be revoked.

  • Texas and Montana lead the complaint.
  • Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen said in a statement: "The power to regulate foreign and interstate commerce belongs to Congress — not the President."

The big picture: The controversial pipeline caused an outcry among climate activists when it was proposed to carry crude oil from Alberta to Nebraska in 2008.

  • Construction finally began last year after then-President Trump issued a presidential permit.
  • Biden canceled the permits as part of efforts to address the climate crisis, raising the ire of Republicans.

For the record: While some of the states represented in the suit, like Kentucky, Louisiana and Kansas, have Democratic governors, all have Republican attorneys general.

  • The Biden administration did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.

Read the complaint, via DocumentCloud:

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