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House Votes to End Ban on US Oil Exports

FILE - Oil pumpjacks owned by Occidental Petroleum Corp. operate near Long Beach, California, July 30, 2013.

The U.S. House of Representatives voted Friday to end a ban on most U.S. crude oil exports.

The measure passed 261 to 159 and now goes to the Senate, where analysts say it may have a more difficult time winning votes needed for passage. If the bill survives the Senate, it would go to the White House, where it faces a veto threat.

The export ban was put in place after the 1970s Arab oil embargo sent prices for gasoline soaring in the United States.

Oil companies and some conservative groups say the United States is now the world's largest oil producer, and they argue that exporting more U.S. crude oil will create jobs, boost economic growth and lower gasoline prices by increasing the world supply of oil.

Opponents, including environmentalists and the United Steelworkers union, say exporting crude will hurt jobs and raise prices for U.S. drivers.