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Trump playing politics with drilling decision

15 January 2018
Trump playing politics with drilling decision

Instead, the administration exposed one of the big drivers of its severe dysfunction; its attitude that the federal government is a fiefdom that Trump and his lieutenants rule according to their whim.

Rick Scott voiced opposition soon after the plan's January 4 release, a letter submitted by the state Department of Environmental Protection a year ago did not oppose the drilling plan or ask for Florida to be exempted. In addition to Florida, the states of Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, New Hampshire, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Connecticut, California, Oregon, and Washington have all opposed new leases off their coasts. The plan was immediately met with bipartisan opposition on both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts.

An Interior spokeswoman said Zinke talked by telephone Friday with six Democratic governors, all of whom oppose drilling off their state's coast: Govs.

Inslee joined California Governor Jerry Brown and Oregon Governor Kate Brown in condemning the plan last week, and wrote to Zinke to express his strong opposition to the plan. "People love our beaches", Mr. Scott, Florida Republican, said on Fox News.

Interior's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has planned 23 public meetings in coastal states "to secure feedback directly from citizens (and) ensure all viewpoints are taken into consideration as the department moves forward", Swift said.

In the statement on your decision to remove Florida, you indicated that President Trump had directed you to reestablish our country's offshore oil and gas leasing program in a way that "takes into consideration the local and state voice". In 2016, the tourism industry in OR directly employed almost 110,000 Oregonians and visitors spent over $11 billion in the state.

Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., said Zinke's action "violates the legal standard of arbitrary and capricious agency action".

Brown previously criticized Zinke for the plan to resume drilling for oil and gas off the shores of the United States, saying it would endanger Oregon's coast.

Mayor of Bonita Springs Peter Simmons said, "I applaud Governor Scott for opposing drilling along our beaches and fighting for environmental preservation across the state of Florida".

With Florida going to Trump in the race, and with the governor's senate ambitions, Nelson added that Zinke's move smacked of political favor. The five-year plan would open 90 percent of the nation's offshore reserves to development by private companies.