President Barack Obama will go to the Gulf
Coast Sunday for a firsthand assessment on efforts to
contain the massive oil spill from an offshore drilling rig, a
White House official said Saturday.
Obama has said his administration will do all that it can to
battle the spill, which came from a BP exploratory rig. The spill
is already the worst in U.S. waters in decades.
Obama has relied on reports from agency chiefs and Coast Guard
officials since the magnitude of the spill became clear late
Wednesday. Aides report he's been getting regular updates.
The spill came just weeks after Obama announced plans to open up
large areas of the Eastern seaboard and a part of the Gulf for
possible future oil drilling. And it's led to increasing calls to
reconsider that initiative by environmentalists and coastal state
In remarks Friday, Obama said he continues "to believe that
domestic oil production is an important part of our overall
strategy for energy security. But I've always said that it must be
done responsibly for the safety of our workers and our
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