The Times of Trenton, N.J.: Sarah Palin gave the pot a vigorous stir recently with her comments about a lackadaisical response to the BP oil spill suffocating the Gulf of Mexico and the fragile ecosystems at its fringe.
The former vice presidential candidate, who made “Drill, baby, drill” into a Republican mantra, has criticized the Obama administration for not reacting more quickly and more forcefully to the environmental disaster.
She has also suggested that President Barack Obama has been reluctant to step in because of campaign contributions from the oil industry. In her inimitable locution, she has questioned whether “there’s any connection there to President Obama taking so doggone long to get in there, to dive in there, and grasp the complexity and the potential tragedy that we are seeing here in the Gulf of Mexico.”
The hypocrisy of that statement is nearly as thick as the viscous mass making landfall.
She need look no further than the Center for Responsive Politics to get an accurate account of the oil companies’ political influence. In the presidential campaign of 2008, her running mate, John McCain, received more than twice as much money — $2.4 million — from the oil and gas industries as then-Sen. Obama, who was given $898,000.
As Obama deploys every means at his disposal to cap the well, he’s calling for measures to better regulate an industry long left to its own devices. That would be an instance of the federal government — so disdained by Palin and the Tea Party for its meddling — in action.