April 30th, 2010
04:55 PM ET

Political fallout for Obama amid oil spill disaster?

As the oil slick from the recent offshore oil rig disaster makes its way to Gulf Coast shores - expected to devastate the precious ecosystem and hurt struggling businesses - the seeds of political fallout for the Obama administration are beginning to sprout.

Conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh said on his program that the oil slick disaster is "Obama's Katrina."

Not so, says Media Matters for America:

"Media conservatives have rushed to absurdly compare the Obama administration's response to a catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico to the Bush Administration's botched response after Hurricane Katrina, a hurricane that left more than 1,500 dead," the liberal-leaning group said on its website. "This claim is undermined by a number of facts."

Another Obama critic, Joe Weisenthal of BusinessInsider.com, wrote Thursday, "Today the story got elevated to national emergency level, but the explosion on the rig happened eight days ago!"

White House Senior Adviser David Axelrod told ABC news Friday: "This is always the case in Washington - that whenever something like this happens, the political speculation sets in."

"The truth of the matter is we had the Coast Guard on the scene almost immediately after this accident. The deputy secretary of the interior was on the ground the next day, and we've been coordinating closely with the local authorities and [BP officials] from the very beginning."

Axelrod said that no additional offshore oil drilling has been authorized and "none will until we find out what happened here and whether there was something unique and preventable here."

Read the full CNN.com story

soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. rporita

    they are all the same...obama is bush is clinton is whoever – they all leave the place worse than when they got there and no one expects anything more anymore. we deserve what we get because WE THE PEOPLE are just as full of s**t because we are always happy to have the next easy way out of whatever and we vote for whoever tells us the next pretty story; sycophants. And then, a volcano erupts and we are the least bit incovenienced, or if we have less oil and have to cur back on our vacations.....oh then we are suing and swearing........I just feel sorry for the earth and its creatures which are being destroyed by our greed and selfishness.

    April 30, 2010 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
  2. bill middleton

    Mr. Obama,

    Please get yourself to the gulf, immediately. THis is your 911, your Katrina etc. Nothing else from this time is going to matter in the future and if ever your personal leadership was needed, it is now. Mr. Bush acted admireably in the early moments of 911, but failed miserably with Katrina. Please do not fail. You can emerge strongly here, but there's a much greater risk you will emerge poorly and most of us really do not want that to happen.
    We need a Chief Executive Officer for the United States of America on this. Presumeably, the British Petrol company will be circling their wagons, but their existence is no longer a question of virtue, they have officially topped AIG as the most hated company by Americans.
    This is also a situation to put every company or entity affected by this tragedy to work fixing it. The bill should go to BP of course but since it will likely be more than even they can muster, it should probably be charged to all oil producers as part of the inheirent cost of business.
    I hope these sentiments reach you, I'm not exactly one of your supporters ordinarily but I would support every action you can possibly take to decrease the effects of this horrible impending disaster.

    William Middleton

    April 30, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Steven

    Quote: "How's all of dat der drilley offshorey stuff workin out fer ye'all?
    You betcher." posted by Spill Baby. LOL That certainly summs it up fully. Of course, Palin fully understands oil spills because she could see Exxon Valdez from her front door. ;P

    April 30, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Haley in AL

    I wonder if any "Drill Baby Drill" politicians will have the balls to come forward and recant their statements? My guess is no one will admit they made a mistake by rushing to judgment. Trying to solve an oil crisis with more oil is like beating a dead horse. I live in Alabama and I am completely broken-hearted about this environmental catastrophe. Our coast was stunning, with sandy white beaches and emerald green water. Looks like I'll have to get used to lying on gray beaches and watch dead animals wash ashore while staring out at a sea of crude oil. Of course this will be a political fallout for Obama.

    "Every asshole who ever chanted 'Drill Baby Drill' should have to report to the Gulf Coast today for clean-up duty." – Bill Maher

    April 30, 2010 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
  5. rastaarborista

    British Petroleum started a whole heap of problems back in 1953 when they wanted the Democratically elected Mosadeq of Iran overthrown, due to the fact that he wanted to nationalize Iran's oil. BP didn't like that one bit.... the rest is sad history

    April 30, 2010 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Lindsay

    The poor animals!!! Just imaging birds covered in oil and dead fish being washed ashore makes me ashamed of humanity. How we can do the awful things we do to the planet, our home, makes no sense to me. All we can do is pray.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:20 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Ron Shaeffer

    The oil spill will change american energy policy the way three mile island did back in the seventies. Deep water drilling is an impending ecological disaster and cannot be part of any intelligent responsible solution to american energy independence.

    April 30, 2010 at 9:27 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Pat

    Lindsay, all we can do is stop using fossil fuels. Praying is nice, but it won't help the gulf coast now, the damage is done. END THE RAPE OF OUR PLANET

    April 30, 2010 at 11:36 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Gary

    You liberals disgust me! Can't we wait until the situation is dealt with before we start screaming for someone's head? Oh yeah...by the way....how about the facts? Can we wait until the root cause is determined before we rush to crucify an entire industry?

    May 1, 2010 at 12:11 am | Report abuse |
  10. Rodd

    I live in Louisiana, and worked in the oil field for over 33 yrs. I will tell you that the drilling rigs have fail safes in place to stop this, but just like our sercurty to keep this country safe like 911, or the shuttle failing in space, things go wrong. the news media has this all wrong. Obama could use this as a good thing. NO ONE wants an oil spill. But like the Exxon spill in Alsaka, this could help the Economic, BP and the goverment could put a lot of people to work cleaning the spill up witch will help the unemployment in the south as well as anywere else that people are out of work.. THe oil will come on shore. and needs to be cleaned up.. Stopping Drilling will not solve this problem. For once, stop listening to the "Horn Blowers" and use your head Obama! If you think stopping drilling will help this screww up country.. OH man are you really have lost your mine! Put people to work! let them clean up the spill and the Environment will take care of it self.. Remember, they said, such as TV ,talk host, and CC all said the the oil field would kill the fishing and shrimping in Louisiana, but it didnt it has only help it...
    Thanks Rodd

    May 1, 2010 at 12:14 am | Report abuse |
  11. danieljoeoconor

    if i ever hear another idiot retarded repub say "drill baby drill" i am going to .... $#^@&@*&^%$#^%

    May 1, 2010 at 12:19 am | Report abuse |
  12. Carol on the coast of Alabama

    I live here. I love my seafood. I love to walk on the beach,fish and swim in the gulf,have done it all my life. It is the very best.
    My husband has work on oil rigs, production platforms for more that thirty years. This was an accident. No one wanted this to happen. People died. It isn't political. Its a problem we all have to work to solve. If you drive a car, ride in a bus, take an airplane you use oil. Not to mention all the things that are byproducts.My point is stop pointing fingers, work on a solution to stop the still flowing leak. Stop the bleeding before it does more damage. Roll up your sleeves and help with the clean up. Don't expect anything if your not willing to give something.

    May 1, 2010 at 8:17 am | Report abuse |
  13. chefdugan

    There are no excuses for the spill. You drill off shore and sooner or later this will happen. There should have been emergency measures in place in anticiipation of something like this but there were not. Maybe those idiots who think jobs are more important than the enrivroment will come up with something.

    May 1, 2010 at 9:39 am | Report abuse |
  14. A. Harrell

    Watching this unfold I was astounded as to the slow reaction of the Federal Government as well as the press. It is my opinion if this was off the coast of California, New York or other larger polical concerns the pace of recognizing significance would have been fast forwarded. It has taken 10 days from the accident to begin to work the story from somewhere three pages deep in the news to the front page. Where is the outcry from envionmentalist? More than words is action and we desperately need it to lessen the enormous impact this may have on for the Gulf for now and many years to come. Its time to stop the blame game and get all assets and all available hands to contain and clean what finally the press is letting out could be the worst oil contamination to the enviornment in our countries history. After we get this under control then perhaps we can look at who has been calling this a National Significance rathter than perhaps a catostrophic disaster. Dispatching three persons to the region shows not only a lack of understanding of what to do in a crisis, but also a lack of understanding the potential crisis at hand.

    May 1, 2010 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
  15. conserveNOW

    "Only when the last tree has been cut down; Only when the last river has been poisoned; Only when the last fish has been caught; Only then will you find that money cannot be eaten."
    – Proverb, American Indian

    I hardly ever hear of conservation out of the federal government as one of the ways to solve our energy problem. Why is this? Most of the time, all that seems to be talked about is how we can produce more energy to feed our addiction to energy and stuff in general.

    We all need to go back to living simpler lives so we want need so many resources. It would also help if we didn't have so many people but that ship has sailed!

    May 1, 2010 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
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