…it’s OK when Obama does it, right?
The Obama administration will approve significant oil and gas exploration off America’s coasts, including a possible sale two years from now of leases off Virginia’s coast, administration officials said Wednesday.
The move, which President Obama will announce Wednesday morning with Interior Secretary Ken Salazar at Andrews Air Force Base, ends a long-standing moratorium on oil and gas drilling along much of the East Coast, from Delaware to central Florida.
The new strategy, an administration official said, calls for also developing oil and gas exploration in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico, more than 125 miles from Florida’s coast; and in large areas in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas in the Arctic Ocean, north of Alaska, after the government conducts detailed studies.
The drilling policy represents the White House’s latest attempt to straddle a middle ground on climate and energy policy…
So who was against it when Bush did it? Not just us, President Summer’s Eve was too:
“If offshore drilling would provide short-term relief at the pump or a long-term strategy for energy independence, it would be worthy of our consideration, regardless of the risks,” Obama spokesman Bill Burton said in a statement. “But most experts, even within the Bush administration, concede it would do neither. It would merely prolong the failed energy policies we have seen from Washington for thirty years.”
***Update, by Sarabeth, 6:30 a.m. ***
The NYT is pleased to describe the proposal as “a compromise”. They didn’t feel it necessary to explain to their readers who the President is supposed to have compromised with. Or what the President got in return.
They did helpfully add:
The proposal is intended to reduce dependence on oil imports, generate revenue from the sale of offshore leases and help win political support for comprehensive energy and climate legislation.
Intended to win political support for comprehensive energy and climate legislation indeed. So what’s the script?
Step One: unilaterally give the Republicans what they want (first nuclear power plants, now offshore drilling)?
Step Two: be very surprised when Republicans no longer feel any need to offer any concessions in return?