WASHINGTON — The Senate passed a bill on Thursday to force approval of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, which President Obama is certain to veto in his first official clash with the new Republican-majority Congress.
The Senate voted 62 to 36 in favor of building the pipeline. Nine Democrats joined 53 Republicans in passing the bill. The passage sends the measure back to the House, which passed a largely similar bill this month. House leaders are deciding whether to pass the Senate bill as is or to hold a conference merging the House and Senate versions into a new bill to be voted on by each chamber.