Inspector General to Review Keystone XL Process

| Mon Nov. 7, 2011 4:13 PM EST

The State Department's Inspector General has agreed to investigate the department's handling of the Keystone XL review, after members of Congress and environmental groups have raised concerns about conflicts of interest.

In a Nov. 4 memo that went public on Monday, IG Harold W. Geisel says he will review whether State and other agencies followed federal laws and regulations in their consideration of TransCanada's request to build the 1,661-mile pipeline.

Last week, President Obama said he will make the final determination about whether the pipeline is approved. But the allegations that State mishandled the consideration have made an already contentious debate even more so. On Sunday, thousands came to the White House to protest the pipeline. After a rally in Lafayette Park, the protesters locked arms and formed a circle around the White House. Here are some photos from the event: