“Drill more”: Fox News figures respond to environmental catastrophe by calling for more drilling

In the wake of the catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, several Fox News hosts and contributors have responded by calling for a continuation -- and in some instances, an expansion -- of offshore drilling.

Fox hosts and contributors respond to drilling catastrophe by calling for drilling

Kristol suggests drilling “closer in, which is probably less dangerous.” On the May 3 broadcast of Fox News Sunday Fox News contributor Bill Kristol said: “Look, it was a bad accident. But the fact is, I think we get something like one third of our domestic oil from the Gulf - from offshore drilling in the Gulf. We need it. We can't cut back on it. Incidentally, if we hadn't stopped closer in drilling after the Santa Barbara accident forty years ago and we've had these congressional restrictions until 2008 for forty years, we'd have a lot more drilling closer in which is probably less dangerous, less treacherous than trying to drill fifty miles from the coast.” Kristol also suggested “on-shore drilling” in ANWR, and added, “I'm a drill, baby, drill, person.”

Bolling: “Drill here, drill now ...drill, baby, drill” On the April 30 broadcast of Fox News Channel's The O'Reilly Factor, Fox Business host and Fox News contributor Eric Bolling suggested that the “six dollar, seven dollar diesel fuel” is “more harmful” for fishermen than the oil spill and said: “We need to drill here, drill now, and hey, drill, baby, drill.”

Asman says “the answer” is we need to “drill more,” tells environmental “hypocrites” to “shut up.” On the April 30 edition of Fox Business' America's Nightly Scoreboard, host David Asman announced he was “sick” of “environmentalists living the good life while lecturing the rest of us about how we're all a bunch of selfish oil little piggies.” He added: “The bottom line is we need oil. And we will for some time, and the only way to prevent us from getting stuck on foreign oil is to drill more domestically. It's a messy business, but it beats most of the alternatives for now. And until someone comes up with something better, the answer is now as it was before the awful spill in Louisiana: drill more.”

Perino suggests continuing “very safe” offshore drilling. On the May 3 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, Fox News contributor Dana Perino said that we have “very safe offshore oil drilling,” adding, “look how much is down there, if it was safe and we were able to harness it.”

Palin posts Facebook note titled “Domestic Drilling: Why We Can Still Believe.” In a note posted to her Facebook page on April 30th, Fox News contributor Sarah Palin wrote: “I repeat the slogan 'drill here, drill now' not out of naiveté or disregard for the tragic consequences of oil spills -- my family and my state and I know firsthand those consequences. How could I still believe in drilling America's domestic supply of energy after having seen the devastation of the Exxon-Valdez spill? I continue to believe in it because increased domestic oil production will make us a more secure, prosperous, and peaceful nation.”

Fox News has long history of aggressively advocating for offshore drilling

As Media Matters has noted, Fox News has fervently advocated for offshore drilling. Its activism has includled promoting Sarah Palin's “drill, baby, drill” mantra and pushing myths suggesting that drilling is environmentally safe. Notably, Glenn Beck has repeatedly touted offshore drilling, including claiming that “if you really cared about the environment, you would let us drill for our own oil,” and Newt Gingrich is the author of Drill Here, Drill Now, Pay Less: A handbook for slashing gas prices and solving our energy crisis (Regnery Press, 2008).