The Obama administration is planning to set the stage for offshore drilling, eventually making America less dependent on other countries for our oil supply and the far left is already livid about it.
The Obama administration is proposing to open vast expanses of water along the Atlantic coastline, the eastern Gulf of Mexico and the north coast of Alaska to oil and natural gas drilling, much of it for the first time, officials said Tuesday.
The proposal — a compromise that will please oil companies and domestic drilling advocates but anger some residents of affected states and many environmental organizations — would end a longstanding moratorium on oil exploration along the East Coast from the northern tip of Delaware to the central coast of Florida, covering 167 million acres of ocean.
Under the plan, the coastline from New Jersey northward would remain closed to all oil and gas activity. So would the Pacific Coast, from Mexico to the Canadian border.
The environmentally sensitive Bristol Bay in southwestern Alaska would be protected and no drilling would be allowed under the plan, officials said. But large tracts in the Chukchi Sea and Beaufort Sea in the Arctic Ocean north of Alaska — nearly 130 million acres — would be eligible for exploration and drilling after extensive studies.
Reactions are just starting to come out and via Huffington Post, protests are already being planned.
"Its like a kick in the face" says Jonathan Ruiz of Florida International University. Jonathan campaigned for Obama for fourteen months, and now he's livid about today's announcement by the administration to open half the east coast to offshore drilling.
We aren't going to take this. A protest is planned for an event in Florida today where Newt Gingrich will be promoting drilling. Nevermind that he needs to entice people to come with free "Drill Here Drill Now Pay Less" bumper stickers to the first 1000 rsvps, this event shows how dangerously aligned the Obama administration is getting to the industry-cheerleading GOP.
Washington Monthly wants to know what Obama is getting out of this by way of GOP concessions, yet admits clearly that this is not such a surprise and Obama himself "expressed a willingness to incorporate this into a larger energy policy during the campaign."
Washington Monthly phrases that as "expressed willingness" and uses the words "alluded to "opening new offshore areas for oil and gas development" during the State of the Union."
As if Obama was conceding something, yet as the New York Times clearly points out:
Mr. Obama said several times during his presidential campaign that he supported expanded offshore drilling.
He stated he supported offshore drilling, it is not a concession, it is not a bargaining chip against the GOP, although Washington Monthly would like it to used as such, it is Obama going after something he wants, as he did with Obamacare, and not really caring one way or another who supports it and who doesn't.
Page 4 from the NYT text of Obama's State Of The Union Address:
But to create more of these clean energy jobs, we need more production, more efficiency, more incentives. And that means building a new generation of safe, clean nuclear power plants in this country. (Applause.) It means making tough decisions about opening new offshore areas for oil and gas development.
He didn't just "allude" to it, he stated it clearly in the SotU.
Let's see if we can't answer that question anyway about what Obama will get for this...
His Obamacare bounce has bounced off without him and left him and his health care plan still seen negatively by the majority, Gallup and Rasmussen along with USA today confirms this.
Democrats are looking at a extremely political toxic atmosphere going into November and according to the latest CNN poll, 52 percent of Americans "said President Barack Obama doesn't deserve reelection in 2012."
51 percent of respondents disapprove of Obama's job performance, according to the same poll.
Top of the Ticket provides more:
A new CNN / Opinion Research Poll out this afternoon of 953 registered voters nationally finds Obama tied at 47% with any Republican candidate. Gee, if only Wendell Willkie was still around.
The same poll also finds a clear majority of Americans now believe that Obama is a one-term president.
Barack Obama does not come up for reelection until 2012, although many Democratic House members and Senate members will be fighting for their seats come this November.
Back to the NYT piece about offshore drilling:
But as a result of the Obama decision, the Interior Department will spend several years conducting geologic and environmental studies along the rest of the southern and central Atlantic Seaboard. If a tract is deemed suitable for development, it is listed for sale in a competitive bidding system. The next lease sales — if any are authorized by the Interior Department — would not be held before 2012.
If I were the cynical sort, I would entertain the idea that Obama is proposing this to garner a little more support from the Independents and Moderates that he and the Democrats alienated over the last year with his Obamacare.
Just because he proposes it, doesn't mean it will happen, doesn't mean Congress and the Senate will approve it and doesn't guarantee anything other than the optics would look good for him and perhaps help some vulnerable Democrats in November.