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Friday, May 28, 2010

BP Oil Spill: President Obama Answers Media Inquiries

President Obama on the BP Oil Spill: "This is what I wake up to in the morning and this is what I go to bed at night thinking about."

Obama addresses questions from the press on BP, immigration, and more. Photos/CD Brown

Yesterday in the East Room of the White House, President Obama responded to a bevy of questions regarding the response and cleanup of the BP Oil Spill, again telling reporters the Administration acted swiftly since Day 1 of the tragedy, and that BP is the responsible party.

Obama, stating he has the "brightest minds and most advanced technology in the world" at his disposal working on the oil spill, has delegated a team led by Energy Secretary and Stephen Chu, along with experts who have experience dealing with oil spills.

Chu, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist, is alleged to have ties to BP. In 2007, BP awarded the bulk of a $500 million grant to the University of California, Berkeley laboratory where Chu was then director.

As the oil spill continues to make its way to and through the Louisiana coast line, one name hasn't surfaced from the Obama Administration, or from any other outlet, until now.

Joe Madison, host of The Joe Madison Show on XM satellite radio, wants the president to consider the likes of retired Lieutenant General Russel L. Honoré.  Honoré, known as the 'The Rajin Cajun', was commander of a Joint Task Force on Hurricane Katrina responsible for coordinating military relief efforts for affected areas across the Gulf Coast (He also served as the 2nd Infantry Division Commander while stationed in Korea).

In an interview with Madison, Honoré (a Louisiana native) is asked if he would come out of retirement to help President Obama with the clean up of BP's oil spill.

"I'm a soldier at heart. Will always be", said Honoré.  "I'll do what I need to do to help."

The Administration has delegated 20,000 people to the region and has activated around 1,400 members of the National Guard, in four states. The Coast Guard is also on site. There are more than 1,300 vessels assisting in the containment and cleanup efforts.

Even with all of that, and as this article is written, thousands of barrels of oil continue to spill into our waters, killing wildlife, putting people's health and way of life in jeopardy.

"I grew up in Hawaii where the ocean is sacred. And when you see birds flying around with oil all over their feathers and turtles dying, that doesn’t just speak to the immediate economic consequences of this; this speaks to how are we caring for this incredible bounty that we have."

President Obama has extended the moratorium for six months on new deepwater drilling permits and plans to halt operations at thirty-three deepwater wells in the Gulf of Mexico.

"Because I think everybody understands that when we are fouling the Earth like this, it has concrete implications not just for this generation, but for future generations", added Obama as he recounted his daughter Malia asking one morning as he was shaving, "Did you plug the hole yet, Daddy?"

Related
Watch Entire Press Conference
Honore on Leadership

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