NY Post op-ed completely inverts Obama's remarks about oil spill crisis

››› ››› BROOKE OBIE

In a New York Post op-ed, James Jay Carafano claimed that President Obama's message in a July 16 press conference about the Gulf oil spill was that "the crisis is over; let the vacation begin!" In fact, Obama said the opposite.

NY Post op-ed absurdly claims Obama said "the crisis is over"

Carafano: Obama says, "The crisis is over; let the vacation begin!" In a July 19 New York Post column, James Jay Carafano falsely claimed that the "main message" of Obama's press conference regarding BP plugging the Deepwater Horizon oil spill was: "The crisis is over; let the vacation begin!" From the Post:

Oil's well that ends well -- or so the White House hopes.

Almost as soon as BP announced it had succeeded (at least for now) in plugging the Deepwater Horizon gusher, President Obama called a White House press conference -- his first in nearly a year. His main message: The crisis is over; let the vacation begin!

The assembled press pretty much gave him a pass. The first question: "Did you feel the earthquake, Mr. President?" The tremor Washington had early Friday was 3.2 on the Richter Scale -- not enough to shake a martini, but the wizened Washington press corps apparently found it more newsworthy than the Gulf disaster.

Yet the real work is still ahead. By most estimates, the 86-day leak dumped 100 million to 200 million gallons of crude oil into the Gulf. Unless contained and cleaned up, that contamination will wreak far more damage to the region's economy, environment and way of life than Katrina ever did.

In fact, Obama said "it's important that we don't get ahead of ourselves"; "enormous amount of work to do"

Obama: "[I]t's important that we don't get ahead of ourselves." After stating that the new cap on the oil well is "good news" at his July 16 press conference regarding the BP oil spill, Obama said that "it's important that we don't get ahead of ourselves here" and that "we've still got a big job to do." From the press conference:

Q: Sir, do you think this means that basically we're turning the corner at least in the Gulf? Tell the American people what you anticipate in the next few weeks ahead, because they're still very anxious about this.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, I think it's important that we don't get ahead of ourselves here. One of the problems with having this camera down there is, is that when the oil stops gushing, everybody feels like we're done -- and we're not.

The new cap is containing the oil right now, but scientists are doing a number of tests. What they want to make sure of is, is that by putting this cap on the oil isn't seeping out elsewhere in ways that could be even more catastrophic. And that involves measuring pressures while this cap is on. The data is not all still in and it has to be interpreted by the scientists.

But here's the good news that I think everybody needs to understand. Even if it turns out that we can't maintain this cap and completely shut off the flow of oil, what the new cap allows us to do is to essentially attach many more containment mechanisms so that we're able to take more oil up to the surface, put it on ships -- it won't be spilling into the Gulf.

The final solution to this whole problem is going to be the relief wells and getting that completed, but there's no doubt that we have made progress as a consequence of this new cap fitting on, and that even if it turns out that we can't keep the containment cap on to completely stop the oil, it's going to allow us to capture much more oil and we'll see less oil flowing into the Gulf.

Now, in the meantime, obviously we've still got a big job to do. There's still a lot of oil out there, and that's why we've got more skimmers out there, there's better coordination on the ground along the shorelines, there's still going to be an enormous cleanup job to do, and there's still going to be the whole set of issues of surrounding making sure people are compensated properly, that the $20 billion fund is set up and is acting expeditiously.

So we've got an enormous amount of work to do and people down in the Gulf, particularly businesses, are still suffering as a consequence of this disaster. But we are making steady progress and I think the American people should take some heart in the fact that we're making progress on this front.

Carafano falsely claimed July 16 press conference was Obama's "first in nearly a year." Carafano wrote, "Almost as soon as BP announced it had succeeded (at least for now) in plugging the Deepwater Horizon gusher, President Obama called a White House press conference -- his first in nearly a year." In fact, Obama gave two press conferences from the East Room in May -- one regarding the oil spill on May 27 and another with President Karzai on May 12.

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New York Post
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James Carafano
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Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill
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