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Archive for April 30th, 2010

‘Drill, Baby, Drill’ Champions Silent On Gulf Oil Spill [UPDATED]

The Huffington Post |  Nico Pitney First Posted: 04-29-10 11:39 PM   |   Updated: 04-30-10 10:54 AM

UPDATE: Palin has made her first comments on the spill, scroll down to see.

More than a week has passed since the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded 50 miles off the Louisiana coast, killing 11 workers, injuring over a dozen more, and causing a massive oil spill that may eclipse the Exxon Valdez.

Yet the two most prominent political champions of offshore drilling — Sarah Palin and Michael Steele — appear not to have uttered a word about the incident.

Not that either one of them has been completely silent. Sarah Palin has published four new messages on her Facebook page since the initial explosion, including a post on Thursday titled “The Straight-talking ‘Hockey Dad’ with a Message for Reform” and another defending Rev. Franklin Graham after he was asked not to attend a Pentagon prayer event.

Likewise, Michael Steele has issued at least six statements over the past week, including one on a new Republican National Committee web video, “Mr. Obama’s Wild Ride.”

And yet, if they do comment, it’s hard to imagine that Palin and Steele would take the same tone that they’ve typically used when discussing offshore drilling.

“Drill, baby, drill! And drill now!” Steele memorably chanted at the Republican National Convention in 2008. “Do you want to put your country first? Then let’s make decisions about our security based on what keeps us safe and not on what’s politically correct,” he told the crowd.

MORE HERE

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FBI Investigating Fed Officials And Massey Energy Over Possibly Bribery

AP/The Huffington Post First Posted: 04-30-10 11:19 AM   |   Updated: 04-30-10 11:40 AM

NPR News reports that the FBI is investigating the possible bribery of federal officials overseeing mining industry regulation by Massey Energy, the owner of the Upper Big Branch mine that exploded three weeks ago, killing 29 miners.

“The Mine Safety and Health Administration is the target of a federal criminal investigation,” NPR notes, and “FBI agents are also exploring potential criminal negligence on the part of Massey Energy.”

The nation’s top mine safety official told lawmakers earlier this week that the government will start going directly to federal court to shut down mines that make a habit of ignoring safety.

Joe Main, director of the Mine Safety and Health Administration, said his agency has had the power to seek federal injunctions for years, but has never tried to use it.

“I can’t speak for past administrations,” Main said during the Senate’s first hearing on the accident that killed 29 men. “We’re going to use it.”

Main also called for a slew of other legal and regulatory reforms to beef up safety enforcement in the wake of this month’s deadly explosion at a mine in West Virginia.

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee convened the hearing to look at weaknesses in current laws that encourage mine operators and companies in other industries to challenge safety violations to delay stiffer penalties.

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Justin Timberlake -What Goes Around

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