“In addition to concerns for oil companies’ ability to drill in the Gulf of Mexico, the Administration should be concerned about Florida’s jobs, small businesses, and the harm caused to Florida’s improving economy by the BP oil disaster, and the potential for another disaster. We must do everything we can to protect Floridians from the very real potential for another disaster from the inherently risky oil industry with a proven records of putting profits above safety and the welfare of our citizens.” — U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Tampa
“The Congressman is concerned that it’s premature to lift the moratorium until all of the facts are in. We need to know what happened to avoid another disaster, which is vital to public safety, our environment and our economy. I would further note that the President’s own commission is still investigating the explosion.
— Sally Tibbetts, district director and press secretary for U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Sarasota.
“We could start out with ‘It’s about time.’ Because the first thing we need to do is to start supplying ourselves with our own energy. and really something else we’ve been talking about, is that the states need to take over 100 percent control of the submerged lands, anyway. .The best way to control your own supply is to supply yourself, and there is so much oil within the boundaries of our country, we could be getting more, and we’re not because the federal government is standing in the way.”
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— Don Baldauf, a volunteer on the board of the Bradenton pro-oil website, www.floridaoil.org., and a Republican candidate for the District 13 congressional seat who lost in the primary election.
“I think it’s a pretty good idea. If we don’t drill out there, somebody else will — Cuba’s going to drill out there — I think Americans are more qualified. We’ve been drilling oil for many years, to make it safe. America didn’t make the bad well of the last few months, it was British Petroleum. We need to drill and Americans need to do it.”
— Al Leveritt, a member of the family that owns Manatee County’s Crab Trap I and II restaurants.
“It is going to make a difference because it’s a constant reminder of the threat that’s out there. I don’t think with what we’ve seen there’s a lot of faith in the federal government to properly oversee these drililng operations. They’ve already admitted they don’t have enough inspectors on hand to really do the thorough inspections, and we’ve certainly learned our lessons that you cannot depend on the industry to do it.
— Virginia Haley, president of the Sarasota Convention & Visitors Bureau