Update: Sorry Mary, the No's just hit 41 meaning the bill failed to procure the required 60 Yes votes. Which is good news for Obama who is spared from enforcing the Veto and ruining his "compromiser" image.
Today's primetime Congressional spectacle has begun, with the Senate now voting to pass a bill to approve the Keystone Pipeline. In largely a moot vote, in which 60 Ayes are needed to pass the bill, there will certainly not be enough support for the bill to prevent an Obama veto, which he is certain to impose and reignite the animosity between the GOP and Democrats once again. Ultimately, the only outcome will be whether Mary Landrieu's political career will be terminated as a result of a failure to pass the legislation: with one vote said to make all the difference, it will be a nailbiter, if for nobody else, then for the Louisiana senator.
As Reuters says, with the 100-member chamber one vote short of the needed 60 to pass a version of a bill that sailed through the House of Representatives last week, Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, who co-sponsored the bill, urged fellow Democrats to support it during a long luncheon in the Capitol.
"It was painful. Landrieu was kind of begging for votes, and some Democrats would say 'no' and then argue with her and with each other," said a Senate Democratic aide who did not want to be identified.
The aide said that Landrieu had been “calling senators all week, texting them every other hour” to try to get votes.
If Keystone does not pass, Hoeven plans to reintroduce the bill in January or February, when it has a better chance of obtaining 60 votes after Republicans picked up seats in the midterm elections. Next year Hoeven could also attach a Keystone measure to a wider bill that Obama would find hard to veto.
Obama has not indicated whether he would veto. But he raised new questions about the project during a trip to Asia late last week, saying Keystone would not lower gas prices for U.S. drivers but would allow Canada to "pump their oil, send it through our land, down to the Gulf, where it will be sold everywhere else."
Don't worry: he will veto it.
Watch the vote live after the jump.