First Obama press conference today since July 2009 and while Obama said he took full responsibility for the government's inaction to the oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, he still found a way to blame the problem on George Bush. Then, there was this:
OBAMA: "My job right now is just to make sure that everybody in the Gulf understands, this is what I wake to in the morning and this is what I go to bed at night thinking about."Bret Baeir's Political Grapevine noticed that Obama's said nearly the same words before....
Earlier this year the White House press secretary said President Obama: "Wakes up in the morning and he goes to bed at night thinking about how to make people's lives better — how to create that environment for creating jobs..."Just like Obama told people in California he "will not rest" until the oil spill is stopped, just before he went out to play basketball, he also repeatedly has said he "will not rest" until Americans are able to return to work just before going out to play golf.
About national security, marking 9/11 last year, the president said: "My greatest responsibility is the security of the American people. It's the first thing I think about when I wake up in the morning. It's the last thing I think about when I go to sleep at night."
The president used a similar line about protecting Americans multiple times last year.
On Friday, Obama is off to the Gulf of Mexico on the way to his Memorial Day vacation (since he won't be in Washington to lay the President's traditional wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Solider). Perhaps while he is in the Gulf region he'll remind everyone of the words he spoke upon clinching the Dem nomination in 2008: "this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal." He spoke those words right before saying he would end the war in Iraq in 16 months. How'd that work out?
As many of us warned throughout the 2008 presidential campaign words spoken off a teleprompter mean little if the man or woman behind those words doesn't have the experience or ability to get those goals accomplished. The case of the oil spill disaster is illuminating Obama's incompetence to the point where even Democrats see it plainly.
This from Democrat Kirsten Powers writing in the New York Post:
...The political firestorm kept growing yesterday, with supporter James Carville ranting that the administration has been "lackadaisical" and "naive" in its response to the disaster. He urged it to rapidly "move to Plan B."Obama Ignores Call for Action and Offers of Help!
But that suggests there was ever a Plan A.
a Democratic president who's embracing drilling ought to know the risks, and be prepared for the worst. But rather than planning for a spill, Obama parroted McCain-Palin talking points about how safe offshore drilling is.
Turns out the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration back in 1994 drafted plans for responding to a major Gulf oil spill, a response called "In-Situ Burn."
Ron Gourget, a former federal oil-spill-response coordinator and one author of the draft, told the Times of London: "The whole reason the plan was created was so that we could pull the trigger right away." The idea was to use barriers called "fire booms" to collect and contain the spill at sea -- then burn it off. He believes this could have captured 95 percent of the oil from this spill.
But at the time of the Deepwater Horizon explosion, the federal government didn't have a single fire boom on hand. Nor is there any evidence that the government required BP to have any clear plan to deal with a massive spill. How is this OK?
The administration's chief response so far was to send out Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to do his best impersonation of a totalitarian thug, proclaiming that the government would "have its boot on the throat of BP."
At Thursday's White House press conference Jake Tapper of ABC News asked this question:
You say that everything that could be done is being done, but there are those in the region and those industry experts who say that’s not true. Governor Jindal obviously had this proposal for a barrier. They say that if that had been approved when they first asked for it, they would have 10 miles up already. There are fishermen down there who want to work, who want to help, haven’t been trained, haven’t been told to go do so. There are industry experts who say that they’re surprised that tankers haven’t been sent out there to vacuum, as was done in ’93 outside Saudi Arabia. And then, of course, there’s the fact that there are 17 countries that have offered to help and it’s only been accepted from two countries, Norway and Mexico. How can you say that everything that can be done is being done with all these experts and all these officials saying that’s not true?Obama's answer isn't important. It's more of the blameshifting and double talk that are common when he's off the teleprompter.
Meanwhile, Governor Bobby Jindal (R-LA) has had it with waiting for the federal government to act. His Homeland Security Director, Deano Bonano ordered local officials to commandeer 40 boats which were intended to fight the oil spill but were found sitting idle last Saturday.
Will empty words, repeated over and over finally wear thin with the voters? From the looks of Wednesday's record low in the Rasmussen approval gap for Obama it would appear that the voter's feel the time for talk is past.