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Congress has pushed the Keystone Pipeline back to forefront of national politics

Earnest stopped short of directly saying Obama would veto Keystone legislation

The pipeline also has implications for the Louisiana Senate runoff

(CNN) —  

As the House prepares to debate Thursday another bill to authorize the Keystone XL pipeline, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the administration’s position on the controversial pipeline has not changed.

Earnest stopped short of saying directly that President Barack Obama would veto the latest proposal because he has not yet reviewed details of the latest House bill, but said the administration “has taken a dim view of these kinds of legislative proposals in the past.”

“I think it’s fair to say that our, that our dim view of these kinds of proposals has not changed,” Earnest said.

Earnest said if the House legislation is anything like earlier bills, “the President’s senior advisers at the White House would recommend that he veto legislation like that.”

“That continues to be our position,” he said.

Earnest noted that the project is still being reviewed by the State Department to “determine whether it’s in in the national interest.”

Congress’ plans on the Keystone XL pipeline could also have implications for the Louisiana Senate runoff pitting incumbent Sen. Mary Landrieu against Rep. Bill Cassidy.

Cassidy is sponsoring the House’s bill Thursday and presumptive Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Cassidy will join the Senate’s energy committee if elected.

Landrieu, who is currently the chairwoman of that committee, is pushing for a vote on the pipeline in the Democratic-held Senate – a measure that could give her a boost in her energy-rich state as she faces an uphill battle to beat back the challenge from Cassidy.

“This has been a project that has lingered far too long. It is clearly supported by 60 or more members of this body,” Landrieu said on the Senate floor Wednesday.