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Obama Supports Our BP Boycott?


Well it sure sounded like it when the POTUS opened a can of whoop-a** on BP, Transocean and Halliburton in his remarks yesterday:

“Let me also say, by the way, a word here about BP and the other companies involved in this mess…I did not appreciate what I considered to be a ridiculous spectacle during the congressional hearings into this matter.  You had executives of BP and Transocean and Halliburton falling over each other to point the finger of blame at somebody else.  The American people could not have been impressed with that display, and I certainly wasn’t…For too long, for a decade or more, there has been a cozy relationship between the oil companies and the federal agency that permits them to drill.  It seems as if permits were too often issued based on little more than assurances of safety from the oil companies.  That cannot and will not happen anymore.”

But apparently U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) didn’t get our memo about boycotting BP – instead she’s serving as the company’s lapdog. That’s because on Thursday, Murkowski single-handedly blocked bringing S.3305 to the floor under unanimous consent, which allows a bill to bypass the Senate’s committee process. s.3305 would raise the current cap on oil company liability for spills like this from the current $75 million to $10 billion. Why would Murkowski oppose such a commonsense corporate accountability reform? Maybe it has something to do with the $426,989 she’s received from Big Oil.

This comes after we learned yesterday that the Minerals Management Service – the office in the Department of Interior with jurisdiction over offshore oil drilling because it occurs in federal waters – ignored requirements to get permits under the Endangered Species Act & the Marine Mammal Protection Act to determine whether oil drilling in the Gulf threatens endangered species or marine mammals. 

This of course comes after a long history of the MMS acquiescing to oil companies rather than to the public. When MMS proposed to mandate a Safety & Environmental Management System for offshore drilling, BP argued that “we are not supportive of the extensive, prescriptive regulations as proposed in this rule. We believe the industry’s current . . . voluntary programs . . . continue to be very successful.” Because, hey, how can BP afford to comply with these pesky regulations when it’s made only $159 billion in profits from 2000 through the first three months of 2010. BP claims that it’s spent $450 million on the efforts to contain the spill so far – send your sympathies and checks here.

-Tyson Slocum is Director of Public Citizen’s Energy Program

8 Comments leave one →
  1. Marc Michon permalink
    05/16/2010 7:51 am

    NO obama does not support BP boycott
    is the justice department going to investigate, prosecute the regulators or the oil companies
    if a regulator made a decision did not regulate they broke the law
    if an oil company suggested to skirt the law a crime was committed
    Obama means BP is liable for the $75 million
    will regular people who bussines gets ruined get paid for damages
    will Obama raise the cap on liability
    will taxpayers pay cost of clean up
    BP will not reimburse

  2. Paola Ottolenghi Velli permalink
    05/18/2010 3:29 am

    I will no longer buy BP gasoline

  3. Paola Ottolenghi Velli permalink
    05/18/2010 3:30 am

    I will no longer buy BP gasoline!

  4. Marc Michon permalink
    05/21/2010 8:22 am may 18 2010 latest gulf spill info
    We’ll continue our frontline reporting of the BP spill as the giant oil company continues to demonstrate that it’s much better at capping the flow of information
    than it is at stopping the oil from coming out; and for the rest of the hour, we’ll be joined by BBC reporter and best-selling author Greg Palast;

    • Dawna permalink
      05/22/2010 12:09 pm

      Can’t we just boycott Obama altoghther?? Every “plan of action” he tries to take does nothing more than screw our country up bit by bit. Or in this case, the whole Gulf of Mexico.

      New slogan instead of Yes We Can…its We Knew You Couldn’t!

      I used to go with nothing but BP, what a bunch of losers who I thought would be great to stay away from foreign oil. Will never go there again.

      Anyone heard of the Corexit they are using now? Life will never be the same…

      Thanks Obama!!!

  5. Abby permalink
    05/23/2010 12:51 am

    Why is it that the American people just sit back and watch and, excuse my language but, bitch and do absolutely nothing about it these days? One thing I’ve learned from studying abroad in other countries is we still have our individual state sovereignty and we still have our own personal freedom and once that is taken away it is very pain stakingly hard to get back! When is it time to step up and take back America the way it is suppose to be by the people and for the people not by the national government for the national government! ..sorry have to vent!

  6. Robert Cuomo permalink
    05/25/2010 5:33 am

    I think our government let us down.
    You can’t expect BP to do the right thing; the right thing to any private company is to maximize profits. “You don’t ask a criminal to stop stealing; you put in a burglar alarm”.
    BP cut costs, ignored safety concerns and didn’t plan for a catastrophe, is anyone really shocked?
    BP as well as all the oil companies need to be regulated and inspected, by people that are not bribed by the oil companies. The oil companies should be taxed to pay the government for the regulatory staff. The staff should be comprised of people who care about the people.
    Politicians don’t care about us, there is only one reason people get into politics, Its a Great Job with a Great Earning Potential. Our system doesn’t make sense; Politicians are in charge of governing oil companies. Oil companies PAY-OFF government officials – Is it any wonder why politicians are working for Oil Companies because they are NOT working for the people..
    We need real people in charge. We need to remove all possibilities of graft and corruption. Whoever pays the politicians is who the politicians are working for. As long as we allow political contributions from companies the companies will be the boss. The people need to be the boss. The people should pay for ALL political campaigns.
    Lets cut out ALL political contributions, each candidate should be given X AMOUNT of money from our taxes that way we will be their boss.


  1. 1 Month Later: 5 Things We Know About the BP Gulf Disaster « Citizen Energy

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