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Palin Slams Obama Plan to Expand Drilling as Stall Tactic
Posted: 04/2/10Filed Under:Senate, Barack Obama, Environment, Sarah Palin, Obama Administration 239 Comments + Join the discussion »TEXT SIZE:AAAPRINT SHARE It didn't take long for critics from both sides of the drilling argument to jump all over President Obama's plan to expand offshore oil and gas exploration along the Atlantic coast and in the Gulf of Mexico.
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin urged Republican senators not to "take the bait" and said the president was simply trying to shift focus away from new environmental regulations and the revival of costly global warming legislation in the Senate.
"Instead of 'drill baby drill,' " she said, echoing her battle cry as a 2008 vice presidential candidate, "the more you look at this, the more you realize, it's 'stall, baby, stall.'" Writing in the National Review Online, Palin scoffed at Obama's announcement that he would "consider" development off the Atlantic coast and study areas in the Arctic. "I've seen plenty of such studies. What we need is action," she said.
The Sierra Club was disappointed in Obama's drilling initiative for entirely different reasons.
"The oil industry already has access to drilling on millions of acres of America's public lands and water," Michael Brune, head of the non-profit environmental group, said in a statement. "We don't need to hand over our last protected pristine coastal areas just so oil companies can break more profit records. . . . One oil spill is all it takes to destroy a coastal tourism economy and the jobs that depend on it." Brune, who wants Obama to take more steps toward clean energy, argued that "dirty, expensive offshore drilling" would not lower gas prices or establish the nation's energy independence.
On Tuesday, Obama said his administration would approve more drilling leases off the mid-Atlantic and southern coastline and in the Gulf of Mexico. He said Bristol Bay, a large fishery in Alaska, would remain off-limits. And no action was announced to open up off-shore drilling on the Pacific coast.