Senate rejects GOP environment, energy proposals

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Senate has rejected several Republican-backed attempts to overturn President Barack Obama's environmental and energy policies as it deals with a bill to keep federal aid flowing to transportation projects across the country.

The two-year, $109 billion transportation bill before the Senate has wide, bipartisan support, but it has become a magnet for lawmakers' favorite causes and for partisan gamesmanship.

Among the amendments batted aside Thursday were GOP proposals to bypass Obama's concerns about the Keystone oil pipeline, delay tougher air pollution standards for industrial boilers and expand offshore oil drilling.

Lawmakers are under pressure to pass a transportation bill before March 31, when current highway and transit programs are due to expire.