Obama Uses BP Oil Spill to Push Corporate-Welfare-Filled Global Warming Bill That BP Once Lobbied For

by Hans Bader on June 4, 2010

in Blog

Talk about chutzpah.  President Obama, the biggest recipient of campaign cash from BP, is using BP’s oil spill to push for a global warming bill that is chock full of corporate welfare and environment-destroying ethanol subsidies.  And the bill is one crafted by lobbyists for big companies like BP: “For years, BP has lobbied for climate change legislation, until recently running around with the U.S. Climate Action Partnership.”

The Obama Administration has done little about the oil spill, even though “BP’s oil gusher is in federal waters, on seabed leased from the federal government,” giving the government the moral responsibility to do something to stop the spill.  Instead, it is adding insult to injury for suffering Gulf Coast residents by imposing a ban on oil drilling that will wipe out at least 20,000 jobs in the Gulf, and perhaps more, according to Louisiana’s governor.

The ban doesn’t apply just to BP, a company with an unusually bad safety record which has been described as a “serial environmental criminal.”  Instead, it applies to the oil industry generally, including the vast majority of oil companies that make safety a priority in drilling (and whose oil wells did not spill even during hurricanes).

Democratic strategist James Carville, who was raised in Louisiana, called Obama’s handling of the oil spill “lackadaisical“ and “unbelievable“ in its “stupidity.”

Until recently, the Obama administration ignored the pleas of Louisiana’s governor to allow Louisiana to build barrier islands to contain the damage from the oil spill, citing bureaucratic procedures.  Yet the Obama administration granted BP a waiver from environmental regulations in April 2009. ABC News reports that the “top recipient of BP-related donations during the 2008 cycle was President Barack Obama himself, who collected $71,000.”

The global warming legislation backed by President Obama would also drive jobs overseas, since it would impose a costly cap-and-trade carbon rationing scheme on American industry, while leaving foreign plants operated by multinational corporations unregulated.  Companies with plants overseas are lobbying for the global-warming legislation, which would give them an advantage over American competitors.  The legislation Obama backs may perversely increase pollution by driving industry overseas to places with fewer environmental regulations.

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