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White House says approval process for pipelines belongs to State Department

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney speaks during a media briefing at the White House in Washington December 18, 2012. REUTERS/Kevin Lama
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney speaks during a media briefing at the White House in Washington December 18, 2012. REUTERS/Kevin Lama

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The process of approving transborder pipelines like TransCanada Corp's Keystone XL pipeline has traditionally been handled by the State Department because of their international nature, White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters on Thursday.

Carney was responding to a question about a new bill from Democratic Senator Max Baucus, Republican Senator John Hoeven, and others from both parties that would approve the long-delayed pipeline from Canada, taking the decision out of the administration's hands.

Carney said the State Department review process was moving forward, and that he had no other comment.

(Reporting by Roberta Rampton; Editing by Eric Beech)

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