Obama Restores Eastern Gulf Drilling Ban

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The Obama administration has reversed its stance on offshore drilling in some locations.
    
In March, the president supported expanding offshore drilling, but the White House has decided not to open up new areas of the eastern Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic seaboard to drilling for at least seven years.
    
"As a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill we learned a number of lessons, most importantly that we need to proceed with caution and focus on creating a more stringent regulatory regime," U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said.

Environmental groups and many Democrats appreciated the move. But the oil industry and many Republicans said the ban would hurt domestic oil production, possibly cost jobs, and hurt the economy in the long term.
    
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) said the decision makes the U.S. even more dependent on foreign countries for our energy.

"This announcement from the Obama administration today will undoubtedly send more economic capital and even more jobs overseas, in the wake of those oil rigs that already left our waters for Egypt, the Congo and Nigeria during the 'arbitrary and capricious' moratorium on deepwater drilling," he said.

Incoming Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) has also opposed the ban.

"I believe we have to become energy independent," Scott said. "Offshore drilling is an option."

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